The purpose of this discussion paper is to explore ways the Australian Government can develop the social impact investing market.
This discussion paper proposes that the Australian Government could primarily support social impact investing by creating an enabling environment for private sector-led social impact investing and by funding (or co-funding with State and Territory Governments) investments which generate savings or avoided future costs to fund reforms and deliver better outcomes for Australians.
Taking a social impact investment approach provides the Australian Government with an opportunity to fund ‘what works’ and reinvest spending that would otherwise not achieve beneficial outcomes.
In many policy areas relevant to social impact investing, the Australian Government is a funder or regulator. For example, the Australian Government has funded social impact investments in the Indo-Pacific region as part of a move towards innovative financing across the whole Australian aid program. The Australian Government is also responsible for financial market regulation, including the regulatory settings that affect social impact investing.