These are frequently asked questions about the Women Effect community. For FAQs about gender lens investing in general, we've prepared a factsheet here
+How can I get involved if I'm not eligible to join the community?
We'd love to see you at an industry event where you can talk to people and learn more about the state of the field. Regardless of how much you have to invest or give, you can still make an impact - search for a giving circle near you or women-focused crowdfunding platform. We will also be looking for guest bloggers and vloggers. We are looking to amplify and collaborate with other networks, organisations and events, so if you have a suitable opportunity for us to work together please get in touch.
+Why not create this community in existing networks?
No one existing community includes the breadth of investors we want to bring to the table in a global context. We do recognise that it can be difficult to lean into yet another group, which is why we aim to be a hub through which guest members connect into existing communities and investment vehicles around the world. Women Effect will show up at the other networks’ events and meet investors where they are rather than replacing existing networks.
+Is this a community or campaign?
It is a community with the potential to launch a campaign. In the future we could catalyse or launch a campaign based on what we have learned about different on-ramps, language and framing for different kinds of audiences. In the interim, the aim of Women Effect is about organising those with capital to deploy more money with greater efficiency and focus, specifically around gender lens investing.
+Impact investing can be challenging enough without putting additional tags or restrictions. Why are you focusing so narrowly?
Gender Lens investing is not a limitation; it is just a lens through which an investor can view their portfolio. We anticipate that there will be different points of entry based on where the individual or institutional investor is on their journey. Some members may use their time in the community to help shape their strategy around gender lens investing and others may be actively investing and will use the platform to find existing funds, vehicles, and networks. Others may be looking just to map out where they are on the landscape of gender lens investing and others may come to find colleagues with which to discuss the harder questions such as using finance as a tool for social change around human rights and social justice issues which may not have immediately investable solutions.
+How will you measure your success?
Direct metrics will include size of the community, perceived value and benefits of the community as articulated by guest members, and money invested with a gender lens. Guest members will be encouraged to provide baseline and annual data about amount of capital moved and appetite for total to move, and this information will be shared in aggregate to the broader community.
We will also carefully track indirect metrics from sources in the community including getting a read from those seeking capital about whether and how this community has helped them to find their investor base more quickly, more efficiently, more effectively.
+What's the long term aspiration?
To help our guest members to be more strategic, to get more capital to investment opportunities that are there now, and to support investment vehicles that are emerging, and to catalyse new funds, new vehicles, and stronger voice from investors. Ultimately to put ourselves out of business because we have nurtured a market that has come of age, and gender lens investing is just part of all investing. But in the meantime, we will listen to the needs articulated by the community, and design the experience, the resources, functionality and tools that this community needs.
+What's my commitment?
There is no minimum commitment to be in the private community, for now, and we’ve designed the community to be as intuitive and easy to use as possible. However we do encourage the community to be as generous with their knowledge as time allows.
After our first year or so, we do anticipate that there will be a membership or other fee structure. Participants will be able to set their preferences so that they're only alerted to relevant content and discussions - this will be done via a combination of digital tools and handpicked suggestions from our Women Effect community host. You can engage by logging in and actively participating in discussions, receiving email newsletters, participating in web-based sessions or by attending one of our in-person gatherings.
+Can I tell people about deals I'm involved with?
Yes, with certain provisos. This is a curated community of practice and a non-selling environment. Investors who are themselves committing to investments or due diligence on investments will be welcome to engage other community guest members to join them, but this will an environment of sharing, not selling. Confidentiality, privacy and trust will be among the core values of the community.