Govt Innovation Hub’s Impact Investing Potential
25 March 2015 at 9:47 am
Impact Investing Australia says the launch of the Federal Government’s $140 million development innovation hub will create new opportunities for tackling pressing social issues.and help scale up Australia’s impact in social and economic development and poverty reduction.
innovationXchange, launched this week by the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, aims to support innovation across the Australian aid program by leveraging new sources of financing and catalysing new approaches to development.
“This initiative has great potential to showcase the role that social and financial innovation can play in tackling the challenges faced by many countries in our region, including access to quality healthcare, education and secure employment”, Chair of Impact Investing Australia, Rosemary Addis, said.
“Governments and philanthropy alone can’t address the challenges that many of our neighbouring countries face. All sectors have a role to play in creating opportunities for people in our region. That includes the private sector, working in partnership with Governments, social purpose organisations and communities.
“Impact investments – which target measurable social returns along with a financial return – provide an opportunity to bring new and larger amounts of capital to financing social innovations, improve the effectiveness of international development programs, and in the process make Australia more competitive in global growth markets.
“We welcome the opportunity that the hub will create to showcase what can be done from Australia to contribute new solutions and enable better, measurable outcomes for people in our region whether that be provision of basic services, job creation or sustainable agriculture and energy solutions.”
Foreign Minister Julie Bishop launched the $140 million project saying it was a sign of a push for her Department to be more creative, entrepreneurial and innovative in its design and delivery of the Australian aid program.
“I am pleased to announce the first three innovationXchange initiatives; the Data for Health partnership with Bloomberg Philanthropies, SEED Pacific and the International Reference Group,” Bishop said.
“The US$100 million Data for Health partnership is the first of its kind for the Australian Government (US$15 million) and for Bloomberg Philanthropies (US$85 million). It will build the capacity of Governments in developing countries to collect vital health information quickly and efficiently. This comprehensive new data will allow us to shape policies and priorities to better address health challenges.
“SEED Pacific will ensure the best new development ideas, approaches and players are mobilised to benefit our immediate region, the Pacific. This $20 million initiative will broker and support partnerships between global businesses and local organisations to solve seemingly intractable development challenges.”