Social infrastructure: a framework for measuring and managing impact

Investments in social infrastructure can deliver above-market financial returns while making a positive contribution to communities and the environment. But to achieve this dual return, investors need to be able to measure and manage the social and environmental goals of social infrastructure assets.

Since the 2008 financial crisis and its aftermath, governments across Europe have been struggling to meet the growing demand for the building blocks of strong communities – affordable housing, schools and libraries, and hospitals and nursing homes.

These assets are particularly attractive to long-term investors because they offer a dual return: an above- market rate financial return that typically comes from long-term lease contracts, and an impact return, which is the measurable improvement in the quality of life of communities resulting from investments that upgrade a school or a hospital.

The tools available to measure financial performance are straightforward. But how should investors measure the social and environmental impact of investments in social infrastructure?

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