Pan-Asian Social Investment Network, AVPN, to host inaugural India Policy Forum aimed at promoting public-private collaboration


The half-day convening on 5 December 2018 provides actionable policy opportunities for investors to step into, followed by a one-day summit for the larger social investment community to share knowledge and best practices for maximum impact

Asian Venture Philanthropy Network will organise the second edition of the India Summit. The two-day summit, happening on the December 5 and 6 in New Delhi, will kick off with the inaugural India Policy Forum, a closed-door gathering of policymakers and social investors. The India Summit on December 6, themed Facing the Future Together, will open up to a larger group of funders and resource providers coming from a diverse range of sectors and issue areas from education to health and nutrition to climate action.

“With an active impact investing landscape, philanthropists broadening their giving, and corporates providing a strong backing for social impact, India has one of the most advanced social economies in Asia”, says Naina Subberwal Batra, CEO and Chairperson, AVPN. “Indeed, the Indian social economy has benefited from policy initiatives that are increasingly focused on capacity building and capital mobilisation. Nonetheless, there are huge amounts of potential for policy initiatives to create more market opportunities, and AVPN seeks to be the bridge between the public and private sectors.”

The AVPN India Policy Forum — an invitation-only forum and workshop at U-Chicago Center — will bring together diverse players within the policy community, including policymakers, development finance institutions and, academic institutions, and more. Key speakers include representatives from NITI Aayog, the Education Commissioner of Rajasthan, Brookings Institution, and more.

“We believe the India Policy Forum will be a good opportunity for policymakers to share insights into their latest policy initiatives and seek feedback from the social investment community to generate deeper conversations towards cross-sector collaboration, says Patsian Low, policy director at AVPN.

The forum will also welcome Rai Mahimapat Ray, an IAS officer who is presently posted at Ranchi, as a Deputy Commissioner, District Magistrate & Collector. A policy fellow in the AVPN Policy Leadership Lab, launched in partnership with BMW Foundation, Rai is one of the 13 nominated Asian policymakers committed to learning from and engaging with a network of social investors to support their policy initiatives.

The India Policy Forum will feature the first and only digital platform for investors to identify collaboration opportunities with the policy community on actionable policy initiatives. Named the Asia Policy Forum Exchange (APFx), the interactive portal allows the thirteen policy fellows to share their policy initiatives, implementation plans and expected outcomes online so that AVPN members and selected partners can find synergies to deepen engagement with policymakers. The APFx will be soft-launched at the India Policy Forum on December 5, 2018.

The keynote speakers who will take part in the event are TV Mohandas Pai, Chairman, Aarin Capital; LM Singh, Head of Impact Investments, USAID Urban Health PAHAL initiative implemented by IPE Global, Prof SV Subramanian, Harvard TH Chan School of Public Health; Rai Mahimapat Ray, Government of India; Anjali Nayyar, Global Health Strategies; Anurag Srivastava, Cisco Systems India; Dr Antaryami Dash, Save The Children; Dr Rajan Sankar, Tata Trusts; Dr Shamika Ravi, Brookings India; Jashodhara Dasgupta, National Foundation of India; Jayanti Rastogi, Magic Bus Foundation .

“One of the biggest challenges that social investors face is the fragmented nature of the social sector ecosystem,” says Binali Suhandani, South Asia Director, AVPN. “As an example to address low enrollment rates in early childhood education, social investors have to not only look at the quality of the education system, but also identify healthcare needs, the family’s access to finances and electricity, and more. A single provider lacks sufficient capacity to address all these problems. This is where AVPN comes into facilitate effective collaboration across the ecosystem to maximize impact”.

The summit will include sessions such as, Financing the Challenging Segments of Sustainable Livelihoods in India; Rippling Effect of Energy Poverty on Education, Health & Livelihoods; Accelerating Innovation in Education through Technology; and Leveraging Strengths of Players in Nutrition for a Multi-sectoral Alliance in India. Embedded into these sessions are lessons learnt on how investors can leverage a broader set of financial and non-financial tools to better meet the needs of social enterprises and non-profits at different growth stages.

On the demand-side of the social sector ecosystem, four non-profits organisations have been selected to pitch in front of more than 250 delegates at the AVPN India Summit 2018. Working in diverse fields from health and nutrition, to jobs and skilling, and education, Global Alliance for Improved Nutrition (GAIN), Agrasar, Sasha, and Action Related to the Organisation of Education, Health and Nutrition (AROEHAN) will have an opportunity to showcase their work while gaining feedback from the audience.