Cross-Sectoral Sustainability Forum

Seats at a general assembly

Ideas

With sincere thanks to those who offered feedback and insight in response to the Discussion Draft, listed on page 3, we are pleased to share the final report.

There’s an ambitious idea making the rounds in the policy community. It has many names and many faces, a testament to its complexity. Distant corners of American thought leadership have converged on its core features, a testament to its potential.

Drawing from the experience of infrastructure banks, development banks, green banks, public banks, the USA’s mid-20th century Reconstruction Finance Corporation, as well as innovations in industrial policy and more, citizens, academics, politicians, civil and industry advocates, and investors are hard at work designing a new public investment institution for the US. It is an investment in America’s future.

This report compares fifteen distinct proposals for a new institution to drive and guide investment in America’s foundations. Although these proposals differ in many aspects, they have enough in common to merit a side-by-side analysis. Following an introduction of the broad context for this policy concept and a summary of each proposal, the comparative analysis covers their common policy objectives and methods, the core design choices which distinguish them, and the special policy objectives which might be worthy of broader uptake.

These proposals are part of a movement to increase and improve public investment in the nation’s future, but this movement also depends on and empowers other sectors, including institutional investors, civil society, and enterprise, as well as other levels of government, to play their part. The debate over key features of this policy idea will continue. Consider this report your guide to that debate.