Course Detail

Impact Investing (34113)

Course Description by Faculty

  • Gertner, Robert Parrish, Priya
  • Content
    Impact investing plays an expanding role in deploying financial resources to address social problems through market-based interventions. Impact investing includes both non-concessionary funds which are marketed to generate market-rate returns (equal to funds focused only financial returns with similar risk) and concessionary funds which anticipate lower than market returns.

    Impact investing presents several intellectually interesting and practically important issues. The institutions of impact investing provide an opportunity to apply frameworks from corporate finance, microeconomics, and strategy to an interesting and rapidly evolving sector. For example, most impact private equity funds are structured exactly like traditional funds. This structure may not be ideal because it does not include explicit incentives on social impact for fund managers, nor does it adjust structure for the challenges of exits for social enterprises. There are rich questions about the market for impact investors -- who they are, how to market to them, and how to structure funds to attract them. Some of the most interesting financial engineering occurs in the impact investing arena as innovative and sometimes complex structures are being developed to allocate risk and returns among investors, satisfy regulatory requirements, and take advantage of tax or other subsidies. One objective of the course is to engage students in thinking through these issues with the tools and frameworks they have learned at Booth.

    This class builds on the existing curriculum in corporate finance and private equity (Corporate Finance, Entrepreneurial Finance and Private Equity, Commercializing Innovation). Consistent with our curricular philosophy in other social enterprise courses, this is not a substitute “social” version of an existing course, but will focus on differences between the social and traditional institutions. Thus, we will assume a working knowledge of the basics of venture capital and private equity.

  • Materials
    Case studies, articles and web sites of impact investing institutions. This course will have a Canvas site.
  • Grades
    Class participation – 20%
    Group project - 50%
    Individual contribution to group - 20%
    Investment evaluation group exercise – 10%

    No pass/fail grades. For joint degree students, college students and other non-Booth students, can provide provisional and early final grades.
    • Allow Provisional Grades (For joint degree and non-Booth students only)

    • Early Final Grades (For joint degree and non-Booth students only)

    • No pass/fail grades

  • Syllabus
  • Winter 2022Section: 34113-81TH 6:00PM-9:00PMGleacher Center206In-Person Only
Description and/or course criteria last updated: October 29 2021