Government to fund social return standard

The Government is to spend about £350,000 on developing a standard for measuring social return on investment, third sector minister Phil Hope will announce today.

The project will help charities and social enterprises prove their social value to potential public service or private investors, said Hope, speaking to Third Sector before his announcement at today’s Good Deals conference on social investment.

The three-year funding will be used on events and research intended to develop “greater consensus and standardisation” in the measurement of social impact. The OTS will also work to promote an understanding of social reporting in other Government departments, and among grant funders and social investors, Hope said.

The research will be of particular interest to supporters of a proposed social stock exchange, which relies on social businesses being able to accurately assess their value in terms of both financial and social return.

Individual investors or venture philanthropists will also be able to put a precise value on what their investment has achieved as a result of the scheme.

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