Strengthening Impact Management CohortImplement a comprehensive impact management approach

Impact Frontiers and the Center for the Advancement of Social Entrepreneurship (CASE) at Duke University’s Fuqua School of Business are partnering to offer a program in which participants will develop and strengthen impact management approaches tailored to their organization’s context, strategy, and goals.

The program will include monthly meetings over a twelve-month period, with workshops, case examples and exercises, structured peer sharing and feedback, guest expert sessions, and coaching. 

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Program Curriculum

The program is divided into three sequences: Foundations, Scaffolding, and the Roof. The Foundations and Scaffolding sequences build on one another to lay the groundwork for the impact-financial integration tools and processes we develop in the Roof sequence.

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1. Diagnosis of Key Gaps & Needs

Evaluate and discuss your current strengths, process gaps, and priorities in impact management, and articulate the key decision points to which the impact rating and impact-financial integrated analysis tools can contribute.

2. Impact Goals & Decision-Making

Dive into key foundational work for building an impact rating as you articulate your high-level impact goals utilizing the 5 Dimensions of Impact and ABCs of impact.

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3. Impact Rating: Enterprise Impact

Build preliminary scoring criteria, aligned with your impact goals, to help you evaluate the relative expected impacts of prospective investee enterprises or funds.

4. Impact Rating: Investor Contribution & Impact Risk

Consider the desired impact of your contribution as an investor on your potential investee, and utilize a framework for assessing impact risk as you build scoring criteria for these elements into your preliminary impact rating.

5. Impact Rating: In Practice

Review, discuss, and practice analysis using an example impact rating tool from a cohort alumnus, and consider lessons learned from implementation.

6. Impact Management, Reporting, and onto the Roof

Consolidate learnings from the first 5 months of the program, discuss implications for reporting for key audiences, and create a work plan for the second 6 months.

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7. Intro to the Efficient Impact Frontier

Explore the Efficient Impact Frontier as a framework for optimizing impact and financial risk and return, and construct a portfolio using real data on the impact and financial performance of a set of proposed investments.

8. Financial Risk and Return Day!

Select a risk-adjusted financial return metric for your integrated scatterplots. Consider how social inequities may influence risk-adjusted financial return, in perception or in reality.

9. Integrated Analysis & Decision Making

Use integrated analysis to assess the relationships between impact and risk-adjusted financial return. Consider implications for investment decision-making rules.

10. Optimizing your Process to Optimize Performance

Design an investment process that optimizes portfolio performance by integrating impact alongside financial considerations at all stages.

11. Advanced Topics in Impact Management

Consider how to assess and integrate counterfactuals at the investor and enterprise levels, and how to value multiple outcomes in your impact rating.

12. Conclusion*

Reflect on program takeaways, celebrate accomplishments, and set sights on your next frontier in impact-financial integration and performance optimization.

*Cohort members will have a 6-month window after the final workshop to present their work to the group in peer-feedback workshops
Our Partner
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CASE at Duke University's Fuqua School of Business

The Center for the Advancement of Social Entrepreneurship (CASE) is an award-winning research and education center based at Duke University’s Fuqua School of Business. Since 2002, CASE has been a leader in the field of social impact and impact investing, serving as a hub for research, teaching, and practitioner training.

CASE has worked with thousands of impact organizations, funders, and field-builders to connect theory to practice. CASE specializes in developing practitioner-friendly training and tools to equip impact leaders to succeed and scale their impact. CASE Smart Impact Capital is a professional impact investing program that has been in continuous use since 2016 by over 95 accelerator, fund, and university cohorts. CASE partnered with the UN Development Programme to launch a Coursera course that has trained over 8000 enterprises and investors to enhance their practices around Impact Measurement and Management for the SDGs.

Impact Frontiers Cathy Clark

Cathy Clark

Cathy Clark is Faculty Director at CASE at Duke University’s Fuqua School of Business and Founding Director of the CASE i3 Initiative on Impact Investing. Cathy is globally recognized as a collaborative visionary and pioneering influencer in the fields of social entrepreneurship and impact investing. She has been named a B the Change Champion, Social Innovation Thought Leader of the Year in 2020 by the World Economic Forum, and one of 2021’s top 12 Agents of impact by ImpactAlpha.

Previously, Cathy was an investor at Flatiron Partners, a philanthropist at the Markle Foundation, and a policy convener at the Aspen Institute. She holds an MBA from Columbia Business School and a BA from the University of Virginia.