On Thursday, April 9th, MIIS and CSIL welcomed Sonal Shah, the Executive Director of Georgetown’s Beeck Center for Social Impact and Innovation as well as Amit Sharma, founder of Empowerment Capital. Sonal, with Amit as the moderator for the lecture, came to speak with students and community members about the policy framework of impact investment as well as debate with millennials about the role of impact investment in the future.
Sonal challenged millennials to think about how money today in invested, especially in the world of philanthropy and in the creation of foundations. Millennials need to start questioning where the money of high net worth individuals and companies is being spent – “If we don’t start asking those questions why should they care?”
Amit ended the conversation speaking about his belief that every player in the development field has a role to play in ending poverty by engaging people at the bottom of the pyramid – “its an amazing lucrative space…and I mean lucrative in every sense of the word”…. But, he cautions, that we need to shift they way in which we think about development and the impact space – “We think about (development) as ‘how can we solve their problems’ instead of making capital available to people so that they can solve their own problems.”