What is SROI?

SOURCE: SiMPACT Strategy Group


Social Return on Investment (SROI) is a framework based on social accounting principles that can be used to help value (monetize) the social, economic and environmental outcomes created by an organization’s activities. Specifically, SROI analysis is intended to illustrate the amount of social value created for every dollar invested in a program.

Internationally, more and more organizations use SROI to communicate the social value of community investment activities in financial terms. This represents a paradigm shift in program evaluation, as it enables the valuation of many outcomes (e.g. increased self-confidence or leadership development) from the perspective of stakeholders.  

SROI is different from a cost-benefit analysis, as cost-benefit is typically calculated from the investor’s perspective. When this approach is taken important voices are often not heard, i.e. the value of a teaching innovation might be measured in terms of student results, but could additionally be considered from the perspective of new skills teachers now have to confidently use over time.

SiMPACT Strategy Group is a recognized leader in the use and development of SROI in Canada and internationally. Current projects address themes of homelessness, services provided to a range of vulnerable people at risk of or chronically unemployed, enabling physical literacy in children with disabilities, among others. We look forward to working with the growing pool of SROI practitioners across Canada through SiMPACT’s work and through SROI Canada.

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KEYWORDS: Finance & Socially Responsible Investment, Business & Trade, sroi, SiMPACT

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