Dollars and Change Podcast
The Hard Work Ahead to Realize the Promise of ESG Investing, with Vit Henisz, Wharton Professor and Founder of the Wharton ESG Analytics Lab
Vit Henisz, the Deloitte & Touche Professor of Management at The Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania, discusses ESG investing today – the increasingly popular practice of considering companies’ environmental, social, and governance performance and practices when deciding whether and where to invest.Measuring ESG well is difficult and many ESG investment products don’t live up to the hype.What will it take for investors to realize the financial benefits and impact of ESG investing?
On Theater, Impact Investing, and Wealth Taxes with Liesel Pritzker Simmons, Co-Founder and Principal of Blue Haven Initiative
Liesel Pritzker Simmons, Co-Founder and Principal of Blue Haven Initiative, joins host and Vice Dean of the Wharton Social Impact Initiative Katherine Klein to discuss the work and strategy of her single-family office that focuses on impact investing and ESG. She also talks about why theater is the best major for a career in business, and dives into why she advocates for a wealth tax.Transcript.
How Clif Bar Delivers Impact with Roma McCaig, Senior Vice President of Impact & Communications at Clif Bar
Roma McCaig, Senior Vice President of Impact & Communications at Clif Bar, joins host and Vice Dean of the Wharton Social Impact Initiative Katherine Klein to discuss how Clif Bar’s business model produces a virtuous cycle where productive growth delivers positive impact. McCaig outlines the company’s plans to cut carbon emissions, discusses their support of organic food science research, and talks about ways to create a restorative food system. Compostable packaging and plant-based pet treats are just a few of the company’s upcoming sustainability innovations.Transcript.
How do impact investors measure impact? With Michael Brown, Head of Research at Wharton Social Impact Initiative
Michael Brown, Head of Research at Wharton Social Impact Initiative, joins host and Vice Dean Katherine Klein to discuss the complexities around impact measurement. Most impact investors report meeting or exceeding their impact performance metrics. But is this truly the case? Brown collaborated with Wharton PhD candidate Lauren Kaufmann on research that uncovers how it is common practice for impact investors to report impact metrics primarily to market, or publicize, their success – rather than to evaluate and understand where their impact may fall short. While the reality of impact measurement may not meet the rhetoric, Brown believes this is due to the challenges of measuring impact rigorously while simultaneously running an investment fund. He offers recommendations for measuring impact, and also explains why the field needs to get more comfortable with impact underperformance in order to learn and grow.Transcript.
Investing in Transformational Social Innovators with Cheryl Dorsey, President of Echoing Green
Cheryl Dorsey, President of Echoing Green, joins host and Vice Dean of the Wharton Social Impact Initiative Katherine Klein to discuss Echoing Green’s work as an early-stage funder of emerging social entrepreneurs. Supporting these extraordinary leaders is Echoing Green’s core strategy to drive positive social change across the globe. Dorsey also discusses racial and gender disparities in funding entrepreneurs and their ventures. Through a new partnership with Goldman Sachs One Million Black Women, Echoing Green will invest in Black women social entrepreneurs whose ventures are addressing critical needs in their communities, such as housing, education, healthcare, financial literacy, climate justice, and more.Transcript.
How Cotopaxi Integrates Impact in Every Aspect of the Business with Davis Smith, Founder and CEO of Cotopaxi
Davis Smith, Founder and CEO of Cotopaxi, joins host and Vice Dean of the Wharton Social Impact Initiative Katherine Klein to discuss how the outdoor gear brand prioritizes impact in every aspect of the business—the supply chain, charitable giving, employment culture, and more. While many fashion-industry brands focus their impact efforts on the environment, Smith believes there’s “no way to save the planet if you're not saving humanity at the same time” and shares why the brand prioritizes a people-focused mission in addition to its sustainable practices. And what if your business doesn’t have an obvious connection to impact? Smith shares examples of how any business, regardless of industry or size, can “do good”—he’s even transforming a pool table company into an impact company.Transcript.
Why Financial Inclusion Matters for Women with Mary Ellen Iskenderian, President and CEO of Women’s World Banking
Mary Ellen Iskenderian, President and CEO of Women’s World Banking, joins host and Vice Dean of the Wharton Social Impact Initiative Katherine Klein to discuss the need to increase women’s financial inclusion – access to bank accounts, insurance, mobile money apps, and even cell phones. Increasing women’s financial inclusion will increase economic stability, prosperity, and equality for women. Iskenderian describes Women’s World Banking’s advisory role, policy advocacy, and impact investing.Transcript.
How B Corps Are Creating a Stakeholder Economy with Bart Houlahan, Co-Founder of B Lab
Bart Houlahan, Co-Founder of B Lab, joins host and Vice Dean of the Wharton Social Impact Initiative Katherine Klein to discuss the origins, work, and community of B Lab, the nonprofit behind the well-known B Corps certification. Houlahan describes how B Lab is building a global movement of corporations that meet the highest standards of social and environmental performance, and how these corporations are legally accountable to balance profit and purpose. Houlahan says we’re at the tipping point in creating a stakeholder economy.Transcript.
Empowering the AAPI Community with Sonal Shah, President of The Asian American Foundation
Sonal Shah, President of The Asian American Foundation, joins host and Vice Dean of the Wharton Social Impact Initiative Katherine Klein to discuss the state of the AAPI community in the U.S. today. Listen and learn how this new foundation is working to achieve belonging and prosperity — free from discrimination, slander, and violence — for all Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders. Shah shares facts and statistics about the growing AAPI community, and discusses the Foundation’s focus areas: anti-hate, research, and education.