Here are some of the projects we’ve been working on
Incubating and accelerating new business models in finance
From sustainable banks, to peer-to-peer finance, through to local currencies and impact investing, there are a growing number of financial innovators trying to meet the needs of people and planet.
We aim to catalyse a shift in market conditions needed for a diverse financial system.
This year we aim to the most promising and scalable innovations that have the potential to transform the financial system.launch an ambitious new incubator designed to accelerate new business models in finance, for people and planet.
Our ambition is to work with nine trail-blazing entrepreneurs who are already building new financial products, accelerating their leadership skills and business strategies of these entrepreneurs, using both consulting and coaching. There will be a strong focus on building a safe, supportive community which promotes confidence and success.
Much work has led up to this new strategy. You can find out more about our track record, supporting new entrants, below;
- UnLtd* Future. A programme designed to accelerate alternative business models that connect people, planet and profit. The programme is supporting nine social entrepreneurs over a one-year period. It is hosted by UnLtd*, The Finance Innovation Lab and Shirlaws Coaching.
- Social Finance. We designed and facilitated a workshop for Cooperative Financial Services and a selection of Lab impact investing entrepreneurs, helping the Co-op explore their social finance strategy for the future.
- Sharing Economy. We’ve hosted workshops for a community interested in building a model of what a sharing economy would look like, held in conjunction with The People Who Share.
- Mapping the System. A project hosted by Innovation MA student David Braid from Central St Martins. He used design thinking to explore how we could map the financial system in a way that could be understood by the general public.
We connect people tackling the same part of the financial system and host projects and events to evolve their ideas.
Our role is to map out current activity in a specific area, highlight areas for potential innovation, help build relationships and create a platform for collaborative innovation between different actors in the system.
- TEEB for Business Coalition. The goal of this project is to achieve a shift in corporate behaviour to preserve and enhance rather than deplete our natural capital. It is led by Pavan Sukhdev and ICAEW and is supported by UNEP, IUCN, Accounting for Sustainability, WWF-UK, Defra and the Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation, WBCSD and Conservation International amongst others.
- Disruptive Finance Policy. This stream of work looks at the most promising policy ideas that could shift the existing finance system in a way that will overcome some of the biggest barriers to a sustainable economy. We have mapped possible areas for innovation and convened a group to evolve some of these ideas. It is supported by the Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation.
- Preventable Suprises We used innovative methodology developed by investment experts to analyse the BP Gulf of Mexico oil spill crisis, to examine the financial crisis and the options for a way forward. Lord Sharman, Chair of the Board of Aviva, Clive Parrit, President of ICAEW and Ed Smith, Chairman of WWF-UK hosted the workshop which was attended by 30 influential leaders of the investment world, the corporate sector, professional and regulatory bodies and civil society.
- RESPONDER. This is an EU-funded project that explores the potential political, social and economic contradictions between sustainable consumption and economic growth. It focuses on consumption decisions made by private household finance and how those decisions impact on sustainability and economic growth. The programme is hosted in partnership with Tim Jackson at the University of Surrey.
- AuditFutures This project explores the question; ‘how can we innovate audit so that it best serves society?’ We hosted an Assembly for over 120 participants from within and around the sector this we identified areas within the system for innovation.
We support advocates for a change in the financial system.
- Campaigning for the Common Good We have launched our new mentoring programmed for economic justice campaigners, in partnership with nef (New Economics Foundation). We’re working with 20 organisations from across unions, faith groups, NGOs and grass roots movements to develop their leadership knowledge and skills.