Many of today’s social, environmental, and economic challenges are downstream consequences of outmoded economic systems and organisational models. The scale, urgency and complexity of these challenges demand a fundamental “system upgrade”.
For-benefit enterprises – hybrid business structures delivering social and environmental benefit alongside profit – constitute a fourth sector of the economy which has been growing for decades at the intersection of the public, private and non-profit sectors. The fourth sector is estimated at c.10% of GDP and having close to twice the job growth rate as traditional for-profits in the US and Europe. Investments directed toward these enterprises are more likely to achieve their intended outcomes and contribute towards Agenda 2030 than those made within traditional models.
To accelerate fourth sector growth, the Fourth Sector Development Initiative (FSDI) will catalyse and coordinate global collaboration among stakeholders from business, government, philanthropy, academia, civil society and others to create the ecosystem required for launching and scaling for-benefit organizations globally, with a focus on five pilot countries. This will unleash millions of market-based interventions across myriad issues.
Successful implementation of FSDI in each pilot country will bring about:
• Enhanced knowledge and broad awareness about for-benefit enterprises
• Promotion of innovative business and investment models
• Development of new policy and regulatory environments
• Increased investment in the fourth sector
• Improved training and education
FSDI’s aim is to create an enabling environment for an inclusive, sustainable, resilient global economy driven by businesses prioritizing benefits to all stakeholders.