Can social investment accelerate an end to homelessness?

The story so far

  • The relative weakness of the evidence base. This means there are difficulties facing any investors or banks wanting to judge the risk of a particular set of interventions, and the bodies being funded to carry them out;
  • Overlaps with existing public programmes. In a world with no public spending, social impact bonds would be relatively straightforward. However, they depend on demonstrating a causal link between additional spending and outcomes achieved. This is hard for target groups already in receipt of public support.
  • Issues of scale and transaction cost. Social impact bond programmes require significant up-front costs and contracting expertise. The number of parties involved in the deals adds to the difficulty.

Questions for investors

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