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The State of the Field of Gender Lens Investing

Criterion Institute/ Joy Anderson and Katherine Miles
This report tells the history of the field of gender lens investing over the last five years and outlines a roadmap to the future, defining the critical areas of focus for resources and attention. We tell that story from the perspective of Convergence, the conference hosted by Criterion Institute, which brought together leaders in the field four times between 2011 and 2014. The research for this report builds from the transcripts and documents of that conference as well as additional secondary research. This report organizes the information in order to survey the current state of the field, make sense of tensions and trends in the field and recommend directions and action by a wide variety of participants in the field: philanthropists, investors, nonprofit leaders, policymakers, entrepreneurs, activists and academics.
As a field, gender lens investing can be understood in three ways: as a set of ideas organized into common language and frameworks; as a set of activities, the supply of, demand for and measurement of investment opportunities; and as a loosely organized set of people and institutions. 

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