In this 14-page issue brief, the second in Root Capital’s Issue Brief Series, we share our experience of applying a gender lens to our work in smallholder agricultural finance. Through our Women in Agriculture Initiative, we have been able to better understand the areas in which we know we support women (as farmers, agro-processing employees, and leaders). This work has also identified new areas for potential impact that further foster economic empowerment for women, underscoring the vital nature of women in less conspicuous—but high-impact—roles and positions.
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Applying a Gender Lens to Agriculture: Farmers, Leaders, and Hidden Influencers in the Rural EconomySep 03, 2014
Social & Environmental Due Diligence: From the Impact Case to the Business Case
We believe that assessing social and environmental factors is not just a way for mission-driven financial institutions like Root Capital to create impact. In this 16-page Issue Brief, we posit that social and environmental due diligence can also create financial benefits that partially or fully offset the costs involved for lenders and investors.
Read the Issue Brief to discover:
Jan 28, 2014
- The five main ways in which social and environmental due diligence has improved Root Capital’s financial results
- Examples of alignment between social, environmental and financial interests
- Ways to integrate social and environmental due diligence into decision-making for impact investors, commercial financial institutions and food companies
"A GPS for Social Impact"
This article featured in the Fall 2012 edition of the Stanford Social Innovation Review. It discusses how Root Capital and Acumen Fund propose a system for program evaluation that is akin to GPS.
"Measuring social impact is a quixotic pursuit. We both should know. Over the last several years, each of us has worked at leading social investment funds—Root Capital and Acumen Fund—measuring, managing, and communicating the social impact of our respective organizations’ investment portfolios. We have done a reasonable job counting outputs and aligning our performance with our own and other impact funds through the adoption of the Impact Reporting and Investment Standards (IRIS). But..."Aug 16, 2012
"Scaling Climate Smart Agriculture by Financing Small and Growing Businesses"
Jesse Last guest blogs for the CGAP series titled "Climate Smart Financial Services."
At Root Capital, we believe that facilitating the growth of climate-smart agricultural businesses that aggregate hundreds and sometimes thousands of small-scale farmers can break cycles of rural poverty and environmental degradation. Over the past decade, we’ve financed hundreds of small and growing businesses employing sustainable approaches such as agroforestry, organic production, and responsible harvesting of natural products. Scaling these and other climate-smart practices at the smallholder level can maintain the integrity of valuable landscapes while creating more prosperous and climate-resilient livelihoods for farmers, their families and communities.Apr 16, 2012
“An Agricultural Peace Dividend”
This article featured in the Spring 2012 edition of the Stanford Social Innovation Review. It discusses how in northern Uganda, home to one of Africa’s longest and most brutal civil conflicts, organic farming is producing economic growth and stability.Feb 17, 2012
“Root Capital: A Case Study in Impact Investing”Nov 09, 2011
“Global Agricultural Value Chains: Sustainable Growth as a Means for Sustainable Development”
Featured in the San Francisco Fed's Community Development Investment Review, this article was written by Patricia Devaney, Director of Knowledge and Impact. It discusses Root Capital's model for sustainable economic development, addressing the financing needs of rural small and growing businesses and building agricultural value chains.
Download article (pdf)Mar 04, 2011
“Conservation Finance in the Galápagos Islands: Capitalizing the Missing Middle”
Brian Milder, Root Capital's Vice President of Strategy and Innovation, wrote this chapter of Conservation Capital in the Americas. The chapter examines the experiences of two ecotourism enterprises in the Galápagos Islands as they assess the potential environmental and social impacts of certification in sustainable tourism.Jan 01, 2010
“Closing the gap: Reaching the missing middle and rural poor through value chain finance”
This article by Brian Milder, Root Capital's Vice President of Strategy and Innovation, focuses on external financial institutions operating in Africa and Latin America that are using innovative approaches to value chain finance to serve both small-scale rural producers and the small and growing businesses that link them to urban and export markets.
Download article (pdf)Dec 01, 2009