HKI-SIA Completed Two Research Studies Funded by SISE

Earlier in 2016 the Institute submitted two final research reports to the SISE (Funding Scheme for Studies/Projects on Social Impact of Social Enterprises) which was established by the Social Enterprise Advisory Committee (SEAC) under the Hong Kong Government Home Affairs Bureau. The two research projects are:

1. SROI and B Impact Assessment Comparative Study
The research team assessed the social impact of two social enterprises – Fullness Salon and Fullness Auto Repair – using both B Impact Assessment and Social Return on Investment. The research findings shed light on the complementarities as well as the strengths and weaknesses of these two major impact assessment tools in the context of small-scale work integration social enterprises. The report also addressed the notion of portfolio management in social investing and examined two impact management frameworks: the international Bridges IMPACT Radar and the locally developed SVhk IMPACT Framework.

2. Use of SROI as a Valuation Tool for Social Enterprise in DPO
The research aims to apply SROI as a enterprise valuation tool in a hypothetical Direct Public Offering (DPO) exercise for fund raising for a social enterprise. Social enterprises face the challenge to raise funds in the capital market, and it has the exceptional challenge to demonstrate its social impact in monetized terms for assessment by potential impact investors. Using SROI as a tool for corporate valuation, this research demonstrated how corporate valuation could be undertaken for a social enterprise and also produced a hypothetical DPO Prospectus for the capital raising. The research aims to broaden the scope of accounting for value for supporting the development of the social capital market.

On March 24th the Executive Director of HKI-SIA Terence Yuen presented the key findings of the DPO valuation research to the Social Enterprise Advisory Committee and shared views with the Committee members on how to promote social impact assessment in the Hong Kong context.

The Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors Published SROI Guidance Report

Social Value UK member Professor Erik Bichard of University of Salford, who was a resident in Hong Kong in the 1990s and now a good friend of the Hong Kong SROI Network, has written a report for the Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors on placing a value on social and environmental impacts of projects in the built environment.

Developing an Approach to Sustainable Return on Investment

The report develops an approach which places a value on the social and environmental impact of projects and applies these to the built environment.

The work uses Social Return on Investment and Ecosystem Services Analysis techniques in an integrated manner in the context of projects and programmes in Brazil, the USA and the UK. It uses this approach to define sustainable return on investment.

The research is directed towards built environment professionals in all sectors where evidence of social and environmental value is either demanded by a regulator or funder, or is likely to contribute to competitive advantage. It aims to collaborate with other disciplines in order to add value by developing new/future knowledge for society and practitioners.

The full report is available for download at: Developing an approach to Sustainable Return on Investment

HKI-SIA Delivered In-house Seminar at the Efficiency Unit

(July 30th) HKI-SIA CEO Terence Yuen delivered an in-house seminar at the Efficiency Unit of the Hong Kong Government on a Thursday afternoon which was attended by over forty participants – mostly government officials and public administrators – from various policy bureaus and departments. The event was hosted by the Efficiency Unit while officials from other government offices were also invited to register for the event.

The key topic of the seminar involved the sharing of findings of a recent SROI case study undertaken by HKI-SIA for the Hong Kong Housing Society’s Elderly Safe Living Scheme (ESLS Project). The 2-hour talk also explored new frontiers in the promotion of social impact measurement in public policymaking.

While methodologies such as cost-benefit analysis (CBA) and Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) have been widely adopted by government for the evaluation of policy interventions particularly in relation to infrastructure building projects, new evaluation approaches such as Social CBA and SROI are yet to be tried out by the Hong Kong Government. Basic information on these new policy evaluation approaches were introduced in the seminar.

The ESLS is one integral component of the wider Ageing In Place initiative promoted by the Hong Kong Housing Society which has worked in collaboration with other service operators to promote the public policy objective. Making reference to the ESLS case findings, other interesting topics including the significance in the promotion of Collective Impact and Shared Measurement were also examined in the seminar, all with intense interest from the audience.

New SIAA Report: Influencing Impact

The Social Impact Analysts Association’s Social Investment Working Group (SIAA-SIWG) have released a report that explores the factors that influence how impact measurement is conducted within the field of social investment.

The Influencing Impact: Understanding impact measurement in social investment report includes a descriptive research study conducted by the University of California Los Angeles and reflections from SIAA members on issues raised by the study.

The study’s research questions were:

  1. What factors influence and inform the way in which impact is measured in the context of social investment?
  1. What are impact analysts doing when asked to help organizations measure impact in the context of social investment?

The researchers explored the first question by focusing on the role of analysts working in or with social enterprises. One of the main findings was that the background, training and role of analysts influence the approach to impact measurement. In addition, the context or characteristics of the social enterprise, such as the complexity of the program’s theory of change or logic model, the age of the program, and the availability of financial resources, influenced the impact measurement approach taken.

John Gargani, one of the SIAA Social Investment Working Group conveners, reflects on the study:

The SIAA survey suggests three market forces that drive the quality of impact measurement— what analysts know how to do (the supply side of the market), how clients want to use impact measurements (the demand side of the market), and the level of resources allocated for impact measurement projects (the market value of impact information). I believe we can leverage these forces to improve the quality of impact measurements beyond that currently produced by the market.

The research sheds light on existing practice and supports anecdotal evidence SIAA has received since 2011.

The report Influencing Impact is available for download here.

HKI-SIA Commissioned Groundbreaking Research on Wellbeing Valuation

HKI-SIA commissioned the Centre for Quality of Life at the Chinese University of Hong Kong (CUHK) to conduct a one-year exploratory study titled “Using Wellbeing Data in the Valuation of Non-Market Goods: Exploring its Applicability for Use in Hong Kong and China”.

The primary objective of the study is to explore the applicability of the Wellbeing Valuation approach in the valuation of non-market goods in both Hong Kong and China. The research will be jointly undertaken by researchers in Beijing and Hong Kong. Prof Wong Hung of CUHK and Prof Tao Lin of Peking University are the co-principal investigators of the research project.

Wellbeing Valuation (WV) is a new approach to valuing non-market goods that is becoming increasingly popular with policymakers in UK and across the European Union. Since 2011 the methodology has been included in the Green Book, the UK Treasury’s guide to evaluating public projects.

The exploratory study aims to cover the following research components:
–       An overview of the existing literature on valuation techniques
–       In-depth review of the current literature on the wellbeing valuation technique
–       Trial computations using UK as well as Hong Kong and China survey datasets
–       Applying the WV techniques in specific policy domains in Hong Kong and China
–       Drafting practical guidelines for use by local researchers and practitioners
–       Creating a roadmap for future development of the WV approach

Daniel Fujiwara, Founding Director of SImetirca and a pioneer of the Wellbeing Valuation methodology, will serve as honorary external adviser to the research project.

The research project is funded by HKI-SIA’s Social Impact Assessment Project Fund (the SIA Fund), which was established in 2014 with generous donations from the RS Group and the Xu Family Charitable Foundation.

HKI-SIA Completed SROI Study for Hong Kong Housing Society

In January, the Hong Kong Housing Society commissioned HKI-SIA to conduct an SROI analysis to evaluate the overall impact of the Elderly Safe Living Scheme (ESLS), a pilot project initiated by the Elderly Resource Centre of the Housing Society that seeks to raise public awareness on elderly home safety and provide free consultation service by occupational therapists on home modification to elderly people living in private housing. The aim is to minimize home safety hazards and support elders to age in place, achieve a better health and a better quality of life.

The core research work was completed by end of February and the final consultancy report was submitted in April, which provides for a comprehensive analysis of the project’s sources of social value creation. The consultancy project was concluded after HKI-SIA consultants gave a final presentation on the key findings of the SROI analysis on April 14th in which top management of the Housing Society expressed keen interest to further apply the SROI framework to other aspects of its Ageing In Place (AIP) initiative as well as in other areas of the Housing Society’s activities.

HKI-SIA to Launch Two Research Projects Funded by SISE

The Social Enterprise Advisory Committee (SEAC) under the Hong Kong Government Home Affairs Bureau launched a new SISE Funding Scheme (Funding Scheme for Studies/Projects on Social Impact of Social Enterprises) and set aside HKD1 million to support five research teams to conduct studies/projects on the social impact and/or social return on investment (SROI) of the social enterprise sector in Hong Kong. HKI-SIA joined two research teams (one in partnership with Social Ventures Hong Kong and the other Center for Entrepreneurship at the Chinese University of Hong Kong) and in the next 18 months will work on the following two research projects:

1. SROI and B Impact Assessment Comparative Study The research team will assess the social impact of two social enterprises – Fullness Salon and Fullness Auto Repair – using both B Impact Assessment (a tool advanced by B Lab) and Social Return on Investment (as promoted by the SROI Network International). The research findings will shed light on the complementarities as well as the strengths and weaknesses of these two major impact assessment tools in the context of small-scale work integration social enterprises.

2. Use of SROI as a Valuation Tool for Social Enterprise in DPO The research aims to apply SROI as a enterprise valuation tool in a hypothetical Direct Public Offering (DPO) exercise for fund raising for a social enterprise. Social enterprises face the challenge to raise funds in the capital market, and it has the exceptional challenge to demonstrate its social impact in monetized terms for assessment by potential impact investors. Using SROI as a tool for corporate valuation, this research aims to broaden the scope of accounting for value for supporting the development of the social capital market.