Sir Ronald Cohen on social investment in the UK - video | The Guardian

In past 13 years, we have witnessed the fastest reduction in poverty in human history.

And yet, countries around the world continue to face entrenched social and environmental problems which traditional governmental and philanthropic approaches have been unable to adequately address on their own.

Today, there is a growing belief that social enterprise, innovation and investment can supplement the efforts of the public and charitable sectors and develop innovative, financially sustainable solutions that use the power of business to deliver positive change, inclusive growth and sustainable patterns of consumption and production.

In this video, Sir Ronald Cohen, the "father of social impact investment", explains the pioneering initiatives developed in the UK to foster long-term sustainable change through market mechanisms to tackle issues such as homelessness, unemployment and recidivism.

These include Social Impact Bonds, which raise money from private investors, and Big Society Capital, the world's first social investment bank. Both provide capital to social enterprises and charities that develop approaches to chronic problems which produce savings for government and measurable social benefits.

This clear and inspiring presentation offers a highly engaging and informative introduction to social impact investment for anyone interested in social business, philanthropy and ethical investment.

It was recorded in winter 2014 and presented by the British Council during Thai Social Enterprise Week.

About Sir Ronald Cohen

Sir Ronald Cohen is Chairman of Big Society Capital, The Portland Trust and Bridges Ventures. He leads the Global Social Impact Investment Taskforce and chaired the UK's Social Investment Task Force (2000-2010) and Commission on Unclaimed Assets (2005-2007). He was a co-founder and chairman of Apax Partners. Founded in 1972, Apax Partners is now one of the world's leading private equity investment groups.