The Ford Foundation is an independent, nonprofit grant-making organization with a mission to strengthen democratic values, reduce poverty and injustice, promote international cooperation, and advance human achievement. Ford began making program-related investments (PRIs) in 1968, and to date has made more than $550 million in PRI investments. Today, the Ford Foundations PRIs complement grant-making across its program initiatives. The Foundation currently manages a $280 million PRI allocation, which is comprised of equity investments and long term loans. The PRI Fund is available to support all of the Foundations program initiatives; the current pipeline is concentrated in investments supporting livelihood development, affordable housing, and provision of financial services.
Ford has been collecting social and financial information on its PRI portfolio for many years. While there are a number of common metrics used frequently across the portfolio, a specific set of indicators is developed for each PRI. Selecting key IRIS indicators will enable us to standardize a group of indictors and ensure that all borrowers are using similar definitions. By standardizing, we will be able to aggregate the data and track trends for a specific borrower, as well as across the portfolio, to measure the impact of the investments.
Other Impact Measurement Tools
In addition to IRIS, Ford uses Ford-specific financial and social indicators, CARS rating reports, Progress out of Poverty Index scores, financial ratings reports, and social ratings reports for measurement.