A scene from the Devex-hosted event "The Future of Development Finance: Closing the SDG Funding Gap" in London. Photo by: Devex

There’s still a big gap between what’s happening in the development finance world, the impact investing world, and mainstream capital markets. In order to move mainstream capital markets toward impact, these worlds need to be brought together.

That is according to Lorenzo Bernasconi, managing director of innovative finance at the Rockefeller Foundation, one of the 150-plus experts who participated in the event “The Future of Development Finance: Closing the SDG Funding Gap” hosted by Devex and partners in central London on Oct. 7.

The day-long event brought together actors from both the finance sector and global development to bear on the critical topic of innovative finance to take a practical look at the current landscape and where the future of development finance is headed.

Some of the issues explored during the day’s conversations include the lack of political will and more fit-for-purpose solutions, while others questioned the narrative often used to describe the private sector’s role in funding the SDGs.

Philippe Valahu, CEO of the Private Infrastructure Development Group, opened up the panel on the role of the private sector in mobilizing more capital for the SDGs by saying he doesn’t find the use of the term “billions to trillions” helpful.

“We know that the money’s there, and we know what it takes to move [it], but where are the bankable deals?” he asked.

During the closing plenary, Mark Malloch-Brown, former United Nations deputy secretary-general, emphasized the need for host governments to be involved in the conversations around financing if we are to succeed in addressing increasingly urgent global issues.

Continue reading the 5 takeaways from the Future of Development Finance event here.

About the author

  • Natalie Donback

    Natalie Donback is an Editorial Associate and Reporter at Devex. She holds a bachelor's degree in development studies from Lund University and a master's in journalism. She has worked in documentary filmmaking and as a freelance journalist covering politics and culture in Swedish, English, and Spanish. She is now based in Barcelona and produces content for digital content series and media partnerships.