The GIFE Conference is the main meeting on social investment in Brazil, and has been held at every 2 years since 2000. The event gathers the main leaderships of Brazilian social investors additionally to heads of civil society organizations, academics, consultants and representatives of governments, serving as a forum for learning, networking and exchanging experiences.
The 8th edition of the GIFE Conference
In 2014, the GIFE Conference will take place from March 19th to 21st in São Paulo – the city where most of the Brazilian social investors are concentrated. The capital of São Paulo state was selected to host the next meeting to show GIFE’s intention to expand the participation of national and international leaderships. The 8th edition of the GIFE Conference is expected to gather 1,500 individuals that will take part on its official agenda and open activities. Participants are people interested in debating the main issues posed today to the Brazilian social investment.
The 8th GIFE Conference intends to foster discussion on the social investment’s capacity of transformation
In order to affirm its uniqueness and dissociate its works from merely charity-based practices, social investment was structured in a planned, monitored and systematic way to generate effective and long-term socio-environmental impacts.
The broader economic and political context of today of latent questioning of the traditional ways of representing civil society organizations and the corporations’ capacity of generating value to the society places to social investment a challenge of breaking the isolation and thinking over strategies that could build new shapes to social work. Its relevance in our days has to do with its capacity of strengthening other dimensions of social work, either by deepening corporate social responsibility, or contributing to public policies, or even by strengthening civil society organizations.
Many paths could be followed to achieve that. The 8th edition of the GIFE Conference intends to discuss social investment today in the light of four main axes: innovation, impact, scale, and networks.
One of the main attributes of social investment is its potential for innovation. Built on collaborative links, private investment has the right to make mistakes, not because of negligence or arrogance, but for its willingness to find innovative solutions to complex issues, articulating knowledge from several fields into unexpected combinations. In that pursuit, risk becomes integral part of its work, maximized by its capacity of learning from mistakes and sharing lessons learned.
Being key condition to any change, the capacity of generating and measuring effective impacts is one of the main challenges posed to current social investments. The development of social businesses has brought new meanings to the dimension of impact, and has significantly expanded its potential. In face of the wide range of actors playing in the field of social investment, impact can be felt in different ways, thus generating the need for qualifying its understanding and perception of value.
Rather than in the volume of resources it can mobilize, the true potential of social investments lays on its capacity of articulating with and contributing to public policies or business of social impact. The premise that social investors should seek for scalable solutions to systemic social problems is not a new one; however, challenges posed to the building of feasible models of proved impact still remain.
The discussion on networks and new forms of association gained momentum with the demonstrations that took to the streets of Brazilian cities in the latest months. People are challenging the capacity of representation of traditional institutions, both public and private, and new and easily-flowing models of association have grown in strengthen. Such changes can cause deep impacts on how individuals are bound to social causes, and can even lead to significant changes on the civil society’s funding strategies.
See the topics to be discussed within the four axes
- Social investors;
- Managers of institutes and foundations concerned with effective changes;
- Entrepreneurs with vision of future;
- Professionals of NGOs seeking for sustainability to their actions;
- Public managers committed to build a better country;
- Consultants seeking for contacts and updating;
- Communicators and journalists aware about the importance of qualified information;
- Academics, researchers and students interested in understanding current context.