Four For Friday | Dec 15, 2023
LF98 | Systems investing, Open Referral, Longevity Cities and Underestimating AI in healthcare.
Welcome to a Looking Forward’s Four For Friday. Four things that have piqued my interest this week. Enjoy!
Impact investing 2.0 - a ‘systems investing’ primer
A thorough introduction and overview in the Stanford Social Innovation Review about the fast-emerging field of systems investing.
The article maps out the limitations of the traditional, ‘single asset paradigm’ approach of impact investing, which neither addresses the complex, interconnected nature of the challenges we’re facing, nor considers capital itself as a driver of real economy change.
“Because of the integrated nature of environmental and social change, we need a much broader network of actors working to address priority issues, and to weave their efforts together in more aligned and complementary ways. As a result, systemic investing seeks to utilize financial capital as both resource and connective tissue.”
It concludes with a framing of the topic that covers guiding principles, actors, ‘objects and infrastructures’ and modes of operation.
Open Referral - local directories as a shared resource
As the importance of social determinants of health is increasingly understood, identifying, documenting and interacting with community services is an increasingly important part of the business of healthcare.
However, local resource directories are generally silod and proprietary, with many groups recreating the wheel, and struggling to keep their resource list up to date. This is something Open Referral is looking to change - they want to create a shared open approach to managing directories and have developed the Human Service Data Specifications to do this. They just released a new vision and white paper and have some examples of shared directories already in the market. (Thanks Mick Fitzgerald for the tip).
A wide-ranging article covering a variety of promising themes at the intersection of human and planetary health and growing urbanization. It describes the growing realization of the importance of the shift from sick care to health and on to healthspan, and refers to the UK’s Longevity Cities initiative as one tangible way to address this.
Underestimating AI in healthcare
Andreessen Horowitz argues the market is not yet properly pricing in the potential for AI to revolutionize healthcare.
Drawing on the experience of how tech transformed the finance world, its analysis suggests that even a relatively modest 15% reduction in COGS and Opex via deploying lower cost “AI workers” would result in an additional $5.6 TN of enterprise value that would be split between startups and corporates in the space. Quite a bounty for hew players, and an incentive for existing ones to engage.
That’s all for this week. As always, feedback welcome. Feel free to share insights or links of interest.