As part of the GIIN’s mission to accelerate the scale and effectiveness of impact investing, we publish job openings from members of the GIIN Investors’ Council and other impact investing leaders.

Senior Researcher

at Impact Weighted Accounts Initiative in Boston Massachusetts

About the Job

The Impact Weighted Accounts Initiative is a newly formed effort to advance the practice of considering social and environmental factors alongside financial performance in corporate management and investment decision-making by developing new, integrated valuation and financial reporting mechanisms.

The Senior Researcher, based at the Impact Weighted Accounts Initiative, incubated by Social Finance US, will work directly with Professor George Serafeim of the Harvard Business School as a principal researcher in the area of environmental, social, governance (ESG) valuation and financial reporting –specifically supporting the research and development of impact weighted accounts. Responsibilities include independent research on the topic of the rationale for and the practice of valuing environmental, social and governance matters in financial statements.

The successful candidate will demonstrate strong conceptual ability; high quality of mind; excellent writing skills; the ability to work productively under time pressure; the capacity to work well independently; and the ability to interact successfully with senior leaders. The position will involve working with academic-quality research, various statistical software packages, collecting and assembling data from disparate sources, and creating databases.

Primary duties include:
• Take complex research ideas, concepts, and methodologies and apply them to this innovative concept of an impact weighted account;
• Develop, design, conduct, analyze, and implement research;
• Structure assignments, manage near- and long-term priorities and keep senior advisors informed as necessary, using own judgment;
• Provide analysis, editing and drafts for internal and external deliverables;
• Exercise independent decision making with regard to progression of research project and methodologies. When confronted with unexpected data, be able to make deductions, add insight, and draw conclusions to share with advisors. Collaborate in development of new techniques and instruments;
• Collaborate with other members of the research team to advance progress and develop new insights;
• Support collaboration with senior external stakeholders including business and other leaders.


Basic Qualifications
Bachelor’s degree with a minimum of 2 years relevant work experience is required. Evidence of academic excellence. Proven evidence of independent research in advanced field of study. Strong skills related to the Microsoft Office Suite are expected.

Additional Qualifications
Economics or accounting degree is a plus. Knowledge and training in social, responsible, impact, and/or ESG investing; accounting; and/or development, health, or environmental economics is a plus. Knowledge of programming/statistical language such as SAS, Stata, R, Python is desirable as is demonstrated interested in research.

This position requires an individual capable of consistent use of discretion, judgment, and initiative. Ability to read academic, subject-specific information and write a reasoned and thoughtful analysis, as well as produce a creative interpretation, is a must. Diplomatic skills, comfort in interacting with prominent individuals, and grace under pressure are essential. Evidence of prior high-quality writing; background in analysis; and/or interpretation of relevant data, research, news, and literature is a plus. Other desirable qualities: demonstrated experience in academic research, strong computing skills (especially PowerPoint), and working knowledge of accounting, investing, health/environmental/social economics. Interest in further graduate study after working at the Initiative is considered a plus for applicants without an advanced degree.

Additional Information
Please Note: This is a full-time term position from January, 2019 through December 30, 2019, with strong potential to continue. Travel will be minimal. The employer does not provide visa sponsorship. The Senior Researcher will interact with the Social Finance team, but will be located offsite in downtown Boston with the Initiative team.

To apply

Interested candidates should send a cover letter and CV to (Subject line: IWAI senior researcher). Review of applications will begin immediately. Please direct questions to Caitlin Reimers Brumme at 617 496 2097 or at the email listed above.

Social Finance, Inc. is an equal opportunity employer, and all qualified applicants will be afforded equal employment opportunities without discrimination because of actual or perceived race, color, national origin, sex, age, religion, creed, disability, marital status, citizenship, ancestry, personal appearance, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, political affiliation, military status, status as a protected veteran, genetic information or any other legally protected status.

Impact Weighted Accounts Initiative

About the Impact Weighted Accounts Initiative
The Impact Weighted Accounts Initiative (IWAI) aims to accelerate the practice of considering social and environmental factors alongside financial performance in corporate management and investment decision-making. This could be accomplished through the development of rigorous, transparent and simple valuation standards (“impact coefficients”) that provide the mechanism for integrated financial and impact reporting (“impact weighted accounts”). The IWAI will seek to generate the intellectual capital and the road-map to inform the creation of impact valuation coefficients and ultimately, impact weighted accounts. Specifically, through collaborative research and prototyping, we aim to develop and describe in-depth the process and infrastructure required to advance impact valuation practices, including science-driven coefficients and implementation case studies which demonstrate the feasibility and benefit of the approach.

This Initiative will be led by George Serafeim, Professor of Business Administration at Harvard Business School and chaired by Sir Ronald Cohen, Chair of the Global Steering Group on Impact Investment. The Initiative will be guided by an advisory board comprised of senior faculty at the Harvard Business School and other leading academic institutions as well as industry leaders. The Initiative will inform and advise the Impact Weighted Accounts Task Force of the Global Steering Group on Impact Investment comprised of senior investment and business leaders.

About Social Finance
Social Finance is a national 501(c)(3) nonprofit dedicated to mobilizing capital to drive social progress. Our work bridges the worlds of policy, finance and social change. Over the last eight years, we have been working with colleagues across the sectors to pioneer the Pay for Success field in the United States. Our portfolio of Pay for Success strategies aims to enlist private capital for public good, use data and evidence effectively, and unite uncommon partners – governments, investors, and nonprofits – around a common purpose: to measurably improve the lives of those in need.