The SDGs require Capitalism


Seven years ago I wrote and delivered a talk about how we leave the big problems of the worlds for the philanthropists to solve, but they just don’t have enough money to do that. The 2020 update to that talk is below. Short story shorter… the total amount of money in philanthropy is less than $1 trillion, less than the value of just Microsoft alone, a tiny fraction of the total...

U.S. Progress on the SDGs


A few weeks ago I posted a graphical update on the UN SDGs globally. That was the first progress report I had seen. A reader today pointed me to the U.S. status and per-state rankings. The map is not surprising, closely mirroring the national voting preferences with the Northwest and Pacific coast states ranked ahead of most of the middle and south. And also not surprisingly, none of the states...

Progress on the UN SDGs

SDG progress report

You can’t work in impact without talking about the UN Sustainable Development Goals. For impact investors, the SDGs are our de-facto standard ontology to describe our interests. What isn’t often discussed is the progress of these goals toward the 2030 deadline the UN set. At this point, seven years away, that deadline, unfortunately, seems ridiculously short. It feels like most of...

Impact Investing is Complicated


My biggest learning from nine years of impact investing is the complexity of the space. I spent the first twenty years of my life as a software entrepreneur, i.e. a techie, and in comparison with venture capital for tech startups, impact is an order of magnitude more complicated. Ultimately the complexity boils down to two issues. 1 – Geography It used to be that 90% of tech investing was...


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