Social Return on Investment

Our work on the economic returns of social investments draws in the body of literature on the cost-benefit of investments such as preschool, family support programs, and health care.Social ROI analyses capture both the costs and benefits of public investments.  Benefits may be quantified in terms of individual outcomes (such as graduation rates or reduced incarceration rates), or they may be translated into economic benefits to taxpayers, parents, private funders, or other entities.

ROI analyses evaluate benefits for individual future years, applying discount rates and other adjustments to accurately capture benefits of social investments relative to other types of investments.  These analyses have a range of applications for policymakers, researcher, and advocates, including:

  • Providing a research-based rationale for alternative financing mechanisms
  • Making the case for targeted public investments
  • Weighing the impacts of competing policy options

For more information about BRC’s social ROI, work, visit our Program Areas page.

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