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Interactive Graphic: Social Impact Bonds Explained

Take a thirty seconds for this explainer on the hot new idea for paying for social services—that let's private investors earn a profit too.


We've covered the exciting idea of Social Impact Bonds in the past here at GOOD. But it's getting much more attention now that President Obama has announced his support for this British idea to get private investors to pay for public services, like housing for the homeless, health care for vulnerable populations, or even education. It could work for anything that can save the government money in the long run but costs money up front, as long as we can measure it.

And while it's great that our government is ready to innovate in a way that pays for prevention—and finally gives our nonprofits a tool for long term, capacity-building funds—Social Impact Bonds are pretty complicated to explain, and to sell. They'll need to be understood if they are to be widely adopted.


Our friends at Beyond Profit have created this handy-dandy explainer for the basics of Social Impact Bonds. Click on through it for a primer. You can rewind, zoom in, zoom out any way you like.

Get in touch via the comments below if you want to learn more, and we'll hunt down the answers for you. Or better yet, send this presentation along with the linked articles and this report, to any socially minded investors you know; this is a chance to earn a profit while doing some good!

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