The Impact Reporting and Investment Standards is a major project of the GIIN's infrastructure development initiative. One of the limitations to the growth of the impact investing industry is the lack of transparency and credibility in how funds define, track, and report on the social and environmental performance of their capital. This leads to higher transaction costs and a limited ability to understand the impact of investments.
To address these challenges, the GIIN is expanding upon work initiated by The Rockefeller Foundation, Acumen Fund, and B Lab to develop and promote a common framework for reporting the performance of impact investments. The group, in collaboration with other impact investors and industry experts, has developed a standard set of performance measures for describing social and environmental performance that facilitates comparisons of impact data across investments. The project is supported by the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) and Rockefeller Foundation, and builds on prior work in the social impact assessment field. Deloitte and PricewaterhouseCoopers are providing technical support for the IRIS initiative.
A common social and environmental vocabulary also enables the aggregation of data from different providers and data collection systems. Organizations that adopt the IRIS definitions for their impact reporting can contribute data to the GIIN, which will produce industry-wide benchmarks and support related analysis by intermediaries, principal investors, academics, and enterprises themselves.
View an investor letter of support of standardized social and environmental performance reporting >
Visit the IRIS website
For more information about IRIS and to view the IRIS standards, please visit iris.thegiin.org.
See how organizations are using IRIS metrics on the IRIS User Registry >
Related Project Efforts
The ultimate success of the initiative will require collaboration and cooperation from a great number of organizations. The challenges of this effort cannot be underestimated; neither can the potential benefits resulting from the more robust and efficient flow of capital with a social and environmental benefit.
IRIS is working in conjunction with other efforts, including PULSE, a portfolio data management system developed by Acumen Fund and managed by App-X, and the Global Impact Investment Ratings System (GIIRS), which is under development by B Lab.