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The Pay For Success (PFS) and Social Impact Bond (SIB) movements to date have focused heavily on shorter-term outcomes that can be monetized and show clear savings to government entities. In part, this focus derives from the need to specify contract payments based on a narrow set of well measured outcomes (e.g., avoided days in jail and foster care, decreased use of behavioral health services). Meanwhile efforts to measure the social return on investment (SROI) of interventions have sought to expand the view of relevant outcomes to include domains that lend themselves less clearly to monetization. This paper explores the intersection between these two movements with illustrations from a SIB initiative underway focused on homeless families with children in foster care. Challenges and potential for SROI in a third-party payor environment will be discussed as well as opportunities to better leverage the strengths of both types of initiative.
social return on investment, pay for success
Evaluation and Program Planning
© 2016 Elsevier Ltd.
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Robert L. Fischer, Francisca García-Cobián Richter. SROI in the pay for success context: Are they at odds? Evaluation and Program Planning, Volume 64, 2017, 105-109. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.evalprogplan.2016.11.012