Why the Drone is the Next Laptop Computer | Infinite 8 Aeronautics by Ean Garrett

Ean Mikale, J.D., is the Founder of Infinite 8 Aeronautics, an Infinite 8 Institute company, and commercial drone research and development firm. The mission of Infinite 8 Aeronautics is the thoughtful integration of commercial drone technology into human society.

The computer itself is nothing more than a tool to transfer and receive information. The laptop became revolutionary because it then allowed the tool to become mobile. So with the advent of the laptop, along with things like Wi-Fi and GPS, you were now able to transfer and receive information anywhere.

Now, this limited the tool to a certain extent. The fact that it was grounded, and that way you could only transfer and receive information, or utilize this tool on a two-dimensional plane. You could only utilize the x or y axis while you were [using the laptop] doing so. You could technically utilize these devices on an airplane, things of that nature, but it still required the user to not only get up in that plane, it still had limitations because the user had limitations, human biological and psychological limitations.

But, a drone does not suffer from the biological and the psychological limitations, and a drone is nothing more than a tool. Not for entertainment, and not for war, neither of those uses necessarily maximize the utility of the tool. It’s like you may use an ill-fitting screwdriver, and it gets that job done, but that’s not the scenario [in which] the tool typically shines.

And so, the drone, its capabilities, its purest nature, shines through being able to do what a computer and a what a laptop can do, concerning the transfer and receipt [or delivery] of information, it shines much brighter because it adds the z axis to a 2-dimensional plane, making it a tool that can collect and gather data in three dimensions. What this means is, this means that you gain the ability to collect data that is far more rich and extensive than we could ever comprehend before. It will become a tool that has many uses. Those that we have not yet thought of.

It is my particular intention to utilize them for good, and purposes that benefit society. It is no doubt that computers have in many ways benefited society, and helped it to progress. It is said that we are at the stage of a fourth industrial revolution. Drone technology will take us into the fifth industrial revolution. And as a result, it shall allow artificial intelligence to progress from stage 3 to stage 5, as a direct result of the third dimension being added, through the collection of data.

But maybe you may ask, “Well human beings are two-dimensional, they cannot move on the z-axis, they cannot fly”. Well, technically, yes we can fly, not solely through the use of machines, but we are unique because we have the ability to separate ourselves, or to transpose ourselves through our minds. I may not be able to see myself from 60,000 feet, but I can imagine and I can put myself there mentally. And through that mental picture, there is a connection, and that connection becomes real, because it is connected to me and I am real. And so then the thought becomes real.

This is makes the [drone] technology unique, because it is an extension of ourselves and our consciousness. And as a result we become more consciousness and more aware, because of the gained insight and information and it is up to us, how we utilize that new perspective, that new data, that new information. And whether we utilize it to push the human race forward, or whether we [utilize] or misuse that information for narrow nefarious purposes, I believe in those things that make life beautiful; I believe we will choose the latter.

Ean Mikale, J.D., is the author of two books, "Rebirth of a Dream" and "The Immovable Race", as well as the Founder of the commercial drone R & D firm, Infinite 8 Aeronautics, an Infinite 8 Institute company. Follow him on Twitter & IG: @eangarrett

Why Social Impact Needs a Seal Team 6 | INFINITE 8 INSTITUTE by Ean Garrett

Anyone with internet access is well aware of the knot the world has tied itself into, but so what? In society, bad things happen and people often go off the edge of the cliff. In light of recent social turmoil in cities like Chicago, Paris, Ferguson, or San Bernadino, what has emerged is a real need to address social, economic, and ideological issues proactively before they explode. Only an elite force of experienced professionals, trained in the art of implementing sustainable and community led interventions will do; the equivalent of a Social Impact Seal Team 6.

To be clear, by referencing Seal Team 6 (ST6), in no way are we promoting the secret targeting of suspected militants. Rather let us take the concept of ST6, and reverse engineer it for peaceful purposes. In order to reverse engineer any concept or organization, we must first look at its initial definition and mission. The ST6, more recently referred to as the United States Special Warfare Development Group (NSWDG), was created in the aftermath of the Iran Hostage Crisis. As a result, an elite counter-terrorism unit was formed, able to quickly assemble and deploy anywhere in the world within a few hours. Now when this force is sent into a situation, all other options have likely faded, and with a budget that is more than the entire Marine Core, the unit has virtually unlimited resources at its disposal. With some of the best trained soldiers in the world, and the necessary resources to accomplish even the most difficult of missions, it is understandable that ST6 was able to capture an elusive known terrorist as prominent as Osama Bin Laden.

Yet, what if such detail, skill, precision, and resources were put into an elite team of intensely trained professionals, on-call and ready to fly into any city or state, to proactively assist in the creation or implementation of innovative, and customized solutions to organizations and communities across America? For example, prior to the release of the dashcam video showing the fatal shooting of Laquan McDonald, there was much intervention that could have taken place with city officials, protestors, and community activists to offer forward thinking and sustainable solutions, preventing social and civil unrest.

Navy seals conducting intense underwater training exercises.

Navy seals conducting intense underwater training exercises.

In the wake of the Paris and San Barnadino attacks, the New York Police have begun to reach out to the Muslim Community in efforts of solidarity. With a well-documented rise in anti-Muslim sentiment and hostility since 9/11, this should have been done long ago. In the wave of mass-shootings in the United States, many shooters ultimately commit suicide. Major Depressive Disorder (MDD), is the number one risk of suicide (or suicidal behavior) among youth, and is the cause of two-thirds of the 30,000 reported suicides in the U.S. each year. And despite its highly effective treatment rate, nearly 2 out of 3 people suffering from MDD do not actively seek nor receive treatment. By ignoring this epidemic we are allowing innumerable time-bombs to exist in our society.

The list of socioeconomic and ideological issues in America is long. As a result, a team of professionals ready to impact communities and organizations dealing with seen or unseen tensions, must have a variety of specialties and expertise. Their identities must be as diverse as their collective skill sets, especially if they are to effectively empathize and gain the trust of communities around the country. In order to achieve such results, this group also must be supported by an array of resources both monetary and non-monetary to get the job done.

In America, our freedom is both a gift and a curse. In our great nation, no individual right is infringed upon until the individual jumps off of the proverbial cliff, even if blatant signs precede the fall. But as recent occurrences have shown, early, proactive, and preventative measures must be utilized without infringing upon individual rights. Often, the reaction of the local authorities, mediators, and support groups are far too late. Also, these various reactionary groups often lack the highest degree of cross-sector knowledge, experience, and expertise to create lasting impact.

If an endless amount of resources and energy can be poured into tracking down and eliminating suspected terrorists, then why not spend the same amount of resources and energy preventing the socioeconomic and ideological environments that fuel terrorists, criminals, and protests? By strategically and proactively attacking homelessness, poverty, health disparities, and violence in communities across America, the land of the free will become a safer place to be. Such a response would require less responses. Let us meditate on this. I’d love to hear your thoughts!

Ean Garrett, J.D., is the author of two books, "Rebirth of a Dream" and "The Immovable Race", as well as the Chief Innovation Officer of the consulting firm, Infinite 8 Institute, L3C, specializing in the design and finance of social impact systems. Follow him on Twitter & IG: @eangarrett

Infinite 8 Institute Opens Portuguese Social Impact Bond Market to U.S. Investors | INFINITE 8 INSTITUTE by Ean Garrett

The Foundation oSeculo is an orphanage and a hostel providing social support to youth, Turismo do Seculo provides affordable accommodation, just a 20-minute drive from the Lisbon city centre.

The Foundation oSeculo is an orphanage and a hostel providing social support to youth, Turismo do Seculo provides affordable accommodation, just a 20-minute drive from the Lisbon city centre.

Omaha, NE - Infinite 8 Institute announces a partnership with Portugal-based intermediary, Finance for Social Impact, to provide U.S. investors with access to the Portuguese Social Impact Bond Market. Investments will go toward such social impact initiatives as the Foundation oSeculo, which is a social enterprise providing hostel accommodation for tourists, while also providing social services for under-privileged youth. Minimal investment amounts are $100,000 Euros, with the Portuguese government guaranteeing 50% of each investment. For more information on available investment opportunities, please visit http://infinite8institute.com/byinfinite8institute/.

For more information please contact I8I Chief Innovation Officer, Ean Garrett, J.D., at ean@infinite8institute.com, 202-492-6119. 

Busing Tables & Cleaning Bathrooms: The Truth About Social Entrepreneurship | INFINITE 8 INSTITUTE by Ean Garrett

Infinite 8 Institute's 2013 Poverty of the Mind Tour in St. Louis, MO. The 8-city tour focused on non-cognitive development and conducting research on national social impact best-practices.

Infinite 8 Institute's 2013 Poverty of the Mind Tour in St. Louis, MO. The 8-city tour focused on non-cognitive development and conducting research on national social impact best-practices.

I’ve heard many say before that social entrepreneurs are the new rock stars. I’ve found that it is this narrow and glorified view of the world of social entrepreneurship that has led many with good intentions astray. Those aspiring to enter this field should be told of its true identity. They should be made aware that although worthy rewards exist for the diligent, the work of the social entrepreneur can be more likened to busing tables and cleaning bathrooms than the lifestyle of a Silicon Valley start-up CEO.

When I was 15 years old, I had my second job working at an Italian restaurant busing dirty tables and scrubbing high traffic bathrooms for $8 bucks an hour. Indeed it was dirty work, but without it being done the establishment would have quickly come to a standstill. We should have been treated like the rock stars for our work, although we were often the least recognized. However, the experience was invaluable as I was able to see the importance of picking up societies dishes. No doubt the work of a social entrepreneur is dirty, really dirty, but the most important jobs are often those that nobody wants. There is a dire need for those who can roll up their sleeves and jump in the deep trenches of Urban and even Rural America. It was the act of working alongside the impoverished and disabled that gave me a unique insight into the problems, hopes, and potential of populations often the target of social impact in America.

It makes perfect sense to want to make profit and save the world at the same time. Many brilliant minds coming out of colleges across America are skipping Wall Street for Martin Luther King Boulevards. Many with lofty goals and impact capital backing them still fail to find success and longevity in this complex work. I do not believe that their failure is inevitable, but I do believe that there are no workshops or accelerators that can adequately prepare you for the real thing.

Having grown up on the North Side of Omaha, NE, what some have called “The Most Dangerous Place in America to be Black,” where impoverished neighbors were raised on sugar water, and gunshots rocked us to sleep, it is a far cry from the ideation rooms and eclectic receptions that have become the norm in the field of Social Impact. As the former national spokesperson for MENTOR: The National Mentoring Partnership since the age of 15, having delivered keynotes at venues such as the Library of Congress and Viacom Headquarters in Times Square, the places I was able to see were a stark difference from the places social impact was actually taking place on the ground. Having worked with populations in over 13 major metropolitan areas over the past 3 years, from mentoring drug dealers at night in the dark parks of East St. Louis, to working with homeless populations in Greek town Detroit, I have found that certain things cannot be taught and can only experienced in this line of work.

There is also a lack of diversity among social entrepreneurs, both ethnic and class-based, and an even lower amount of hands-on work and life experience among entrepreneurs in the field of social impact. If social entrepreneurs are to create real and measurable impact, if the tourist or newly lettered archeologist on their Amazonian mission are to make it out alive (figuratively and literally), then the experiences of those who have survived the jungle should be honored. People want to be empowered from the inside, and not lectured from the outside. The memorization of methodologies can never prepare one for the actual field, only humility can do that. But if social entrepreneurs are made aware of the true conditions, obstacles, and humility needed to achieve measurable results on the ground, we will succeed in creating a new generation of entrepreneurs who not only do business differently, but also change the lives of the populations they seek to serve with genuine human empathy. Creating such a world is one I would love to be a part of.

Ean Garrett, J.D., is the author of two books, "Rebirth of a Dream" and "The Immovable Race", as well as the Chief Innovation Officer of the consulting firm, Infinite 8 Institute, L3C, specializing in the design and finance of social impact systems. Follow him on Twitter & IG: @eangarrett

Micro-Social Impact Bonds vs. U.S. Treasury, Corporate, and Municipal Bonds | INFINITE 8 INSTITUTE by Ean Garrett

In the modern era of constant innovation, the innovation often far outpaces the education and dissemination of information to relevant populations. The field of social impact investing is no different. As with any investment, the investor should adequately be educated and conduct their own due diligence before investing in any financial product. With this in mind we seek to assist in creating a heightened awareness concerning the benefits and potential risks between Social Impact Bonds (SIBs) and comparable investments.

First, we must answer the question, "what is a bond?" A bond involves issuing capital from a creditor to a borrower, with the borrower providing the creditor with an IOU in return, promising to make payments in the future. Many investors are attracted to bonds because they provide fixed and more predictable income streams. Investors in bonds range from individuals to insurance companies and pension funds.

The largest issuers of bonds are the U.S. Treasury, who issues roughly $11 Trillion in bonds annually. The next largest issuer of bonds are Corporations, who issue $8.5 Trillion in bonds annually. Municipal Bonds come in third issuing $2.5 Trillion. While, the emerging market for Social Impact Bonds since 2012 has averaged a modest $26 Million dollars respectively. 

U.S. Treasury Bonds

The first type of bond we will discuss is the most widely known type, U.S. Treasury Bonds.These bonds are most often acquired by hedge funds, mutual funds, and large endowments. These bonds are attractive to investors because they are less risky than other bond types, with bonds guaranteed by the full faith and credit of the U.S. Government. Treasury Bonds also provide fixed and predictable income streams with interest payments often being paid to investors on a semi-annual or annual basis. Also, Treasury Bonds are liquid and can be traded amongst investors. Furthermore, Treasury Bonds are also tax-exempt at the state level, although not at the Federal level. However, there are a few drawbacks to the types of financial vehicles. Treasury Bonds are subject to and not adjusted for inflation, and investors assume the risk that their dollar invested today will not have a decreased value upon bond maturity. Additionally, Fluctuations in the interest rates affect the amount of semi-annual and annual interest payments to investors. Finally, while less risky, profitability tends to be lower as a result. According to Bloomberg, the 10-year yield for U.S. Treasury Bonds has been a modest 2.24%.

Corporate Bonds

Another bond type of the Corporate Bond. Corporate Bonds are less liquid, have a higher default rate, and are not guaranteed. As a result, these investments are riskier than U.S. Treasury Bonds. On the other hand, with increased risk lies opportunities for higher profit yields than those traditionally associated with government backed securities. For example, investors who purchased Apples 30-year bond will be paid an annual interest rate of 3.45%, beating similar yields among U.S. Treasury Bonds. The shortfall is that they are not tax-exempt. The marginal tax rate for 2013 from income earners between $72,500 to $146,400 was 25%. 

Municipal Bonds

Municipal Bonds are issued by State and local governments, School Districts, and non-profits. These bond types have historically low default rates, making them less risky of an investment. However, certain municipalities have indeed defaulted in the past, such as Jefferson County, AL, Harrisburg, PA, Vallejo, CA, and Stockton, CA. There is also no Federal income tax for Municipal Bonds, making them attractive for many individual investors. The flip-side is that Municipal Bonds are not as liquid or as default-proof as U.S. Treasury Bonds, and with yields that are most often lower than Corporate Bonds. The S & P Dow Jones Indices has 3-year New York Municipal Bonds yielding 2.46%

Micro-Social Impact Bonds

Social Impact Bonds are relatively new to the market, and Micro-Social Impact Bonds are even more contemporary. These investment vehicles are optimized for the areas of Education, Health Care, Affordable Housing, Juvenile Justice, and Environmental Initiatives. These investments are closer to Corporate Bonds, in that they are not guaranteed by any government entity. These are purely private transactions that are guaranteed by Philanthropic organizations instead of government, making them attractive to investors because of their private nature. Also, investors stand to make a predictable 5% standard interest on their investment at a flat rate, or compounded semi-annually/annually, depending upon the preference of investors. Additionally, upon maturity investors are paid back on a per-capita basis, meaning that for every individual that successfully meets targeted outcomes, investors receive a payment. This mitigates risk for investors by making ensuring that even if the program implemented on the ground fails to meet benchmarks (i.e., 79 students vs. 80 out of 100 students graduating), investors are still paid for each outcome that was successful. There are also many tax-incentives, such as the New Market Tax-credits and Low-income Housing Tax Credits. The down-side to these investment is the obvious risk of the unproven market and reliance on service providers to perform and achieve outcomes. There is also the lack of liquidity and risk of philanthropic organizations defaulting, similar to a Corporate Bond.

The investment arena can be one of many hurdles and frustrations for those who are unfamiliar with the financial jargon and complex equations. We hope to bring a sense of clarity for those seeking to understand the differentiation between such investment vehicles. Please share your stories and experiences utilizing different similar investments, and if we can ever be of service please do not hesitate to contact us.

Ean Garrett, J.D., is the author of two books, "Rebirth of a Dream" and "The Immovable Race", as well as the Chief Innovation Officer of the consulting firm, Infinite 8 Institute, L3C, specializing in the design and finance of social impact systems. Follow him on Twitter & IG: @eangarrett

Press Release: PG County Micro-Social Impact Bond for STEAM | INFINITE 8 INSTITUTE by Ean Garrett

The PG County Micro-Social Impact Bond for STEAM is America's first Social Impact Bond of any kind for Science, Technology, Engineering, Art & Design, and Mathematics.

The PG County Micro-Social Impact Bond for STEAM is America's first Social Impact Bond of any kind for Science, Technology, Engineering, Art & Design, and Mathematics.

PG COUNTY MICRO-SOCIAL IMPACT BOND: A FEASIBILITY STUDY - FALL/WINTER 2015

For Release, 11/8/2015

First Micro-Social Impact Bond for STEAM in PG County, MD

Hyattsville, MD – On National STEM day, November 8th, Infinite 8 Institute, L3C (I8I), an Omaha-based social enterprise that designs and finances social impact bonds, will partner with Maryland-based College and Career Pathways, Inc., Berkley-based 3D Robotics, Georgetown University’s Social Enterprise & Nonprofit Law Clinic, Northwestern High School, and other local and national corporate, philanthropic, and financial institutions on the first Social Impact Bond for STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, & Mathematics) in the United States. The $2.5 million dollar 3-year pilot project will be privately financed without government dollars and could save Maryland taxpayers an estimated $13 million in criminal justice and special education expenditures if proven successful. The purpose of the initiative is to increase diversity in the STEAM fields by highly developing 50 low-income minority high schoolers.

The Micro-SIB, with a narrow scope of testing prototypical innovations, will feature a summer academy at the University of Maryland, with a Saturday school component continuing during the school year. Focus areas of emerging technologies will include: Drone Technology, Bitcoin, Green Energy, 3D Printing, and Mobile Technology, and Digital Art and Design. A Press Conference will be held at 9:00am, Monday November 9th in the Northwestern High School Auditorium, 7000 Adelphi Road, Hyattsville, Maryland 20782, Office: 301-985-1820

Contact: Ean Garrett, J.D., Chief Innovation Officer, Infinite 8 Institute, L3C

(p) 202-492-6119, (e) ean@infinite8institute.com.

Infinite 8 Awarded SBIR Grant by NE Dept. of Economic Development for Drone R & D | INFINITE 8 INSTITUTE by Ean Garrett

3D-Robotics-SOLO-Drone-10-700x394.jpg

Omaha, NE – Today, October 29, 2015, Infinite 8 Institute, an Omaha-based social enterprise, who designs and finances social impact systems, was recently awarded the Phase 0 SBIR Grant for Drone Research and Development by the Nebraska Department of Economic Development. Infinite 8 Institute will partner with Berkley-based 3D Robotics, Agape Red, and Bryant Technology Center to further pursue Federal SBIR Phase I & II opportunities. The purpose of the initiative is to increase workforce development in the STEM fields.

Infinite 8 Institute brings together promising investors, promising ideas, and promising organizations, to facilitate the creation of impactful and profit-driven investments.

Additional Information: Ean Garrett, J.D., Chief Innovation Officer, Infinite 8 Institute, L3C

(P) 202-492-6119, (E) ean@infinite8institute.com.

Save the Markets, Invest in People: Top 5 Reasons for Making Socially Responsible Investments | INFINITE 8 INSTITUTE by Ean Garrett

According to the latest 2014 release of Dalbar’s Quantitative Analysis of Investor Behavior (QAIB), the average investor in a blend of equities and fixed-income mutual funds has garnered only a 2.6% net annualized rate of return for the 10-year time period ending Dec. 31, 2013.

According to the latest 2014 release of Dalbar’s Quantitative Analysis of Investor Behavior (QAIB), the average investor in a blend of equities and fixed-income mutual funds has garnered only a 2.6% net annualized rate of return for the 10-year time period ending Dec. 31, 2013.

In 1602, the Dutch East Indian Company issued the first shares of stock by a multinational company. The creation of stock and the pooling together of assets of smaller investors, fueled much of the industrial progress during the enlightenment period and beyond. Before stock, only governments or extremely wealthy families were able to build vessels, cathedrals, and other larger projects of scale.

The corporation later became designated as a person, and stock valuation became the determination of that hypothetical person’s worth. And in the creation of that avatar, we've often forgot that the corporation is not a single hypothetical person, but indeed is the totality of many real people. Multimillion dollar marketing budgets are now effective at hiding thousands of workers behind the veil of a brand. In spite of the singular attention of that one brand, it takes lots of people doing a hundred things right for a corporation to consistently perform at a high level. Thus, if the people behind a brand perform strong, the brand performs strong, and its stock performance will follow.

During the Great Depression, with the signing of the New Deal by Franklin D. Roosevelt, it was his investment in people that made him what many call the third greatest President, after Washington and Lincoln. His new deal investments in infrastructure, unemployment, and other systematic innovations of his time were ultimately investments in human assets. And that is why human-centered investments will always trump investments in artificial or hypothetical concepts. Because an idea is nothing without the effort of the people who manifest it into reality. Therefore, Socially Responsible Investments (SRI), such as Social Impact Bonds or Green Bonds present a timely opportunity to provide stability to a tumultuous market, and the following provides a few reasons why:

1) Market Volatility - The volatility of the stock market is partially as a result of the subjective reactions and valuations of the market. A financial vehicle whose value was determined by quantifiable outcomes, such as tax-payer cost savings, provide a more stable and objective way to transfer or measure the value of publicly offered financial instruments.

2) Per Capita Gains vs. Capital Gains - With stock there is something called Capital Gains. If you buy your stock and sell it, if the selling price is higher than the buying price after taxes, what’s left is called Capital Gains. The problem with capital gains is that they are determined wholly by the whims of the market. On Monday, August 24th of this year, the Chinese stock market lost over 30% of its value. With the returns of a social impact investment based on per capita outcomes, counting each person who meets the agreed criteria as a success, 1/3rd of a cohort of program beneficiaries would have to somehow exit the program in a single day to achieve a similar loss. Furthermore, in such cases, agreements would likely be set in place to provide for the replacement of program beneficiaries who choose to quit or are removed, chosen from a waiting list of other students within a few weeks of the student leaving the program, without counting the interim vacancy against the service provider.

 3) Infrastructure Improvement - In the United States, according to Forbes, in 2013, 24.3% of U.S. bridges—64,000 in all—were identified as structurally deficient or functionally obsolete. Also, The Secretary of the Department of Transportation, Anthony Foxx, has been quoted as saying,

…we need to build new things again.  Our nation is growing by 70 million people over the next 30 years.  That growth is coming largely in the south and western parts of the country.  We will choke on our own growth if we’re not careful.”

Additionally, there must be a spending of funds that will go toward infrastructure improvements, such as the roads, which will save consumers millions of dollars in costs associated with car repairs and emergency visits as a result of car accidents caused by bad roads. The use of such creative financing will put needed and passive financing to work, also creating new jobs and spurring economic development, ultimately helping people.

4) Local Investment - Through the encouragement and empowerment of local communities, by providing them with the tools, resources, and technical assistance necessary to facilitate their own progression and transition, the efficient and effective use of resources is the result. There must be community-based tax-incentives to invest in social impact financial projects. With the purchase of traditional stocks, investment dollars often leave communities and in many cases fuel international operations. A tax-break for Socially Responsible Investments of 30%-50% at the State and Federal level would release immense amounts of capital and stimulate local economies, such as the tax-break for Early Childhood in Colorado.

5) Insurance - While banking account balances of up to $250k are insured by the FDIC, any investments in assets such as stocks, are not insulated from risk. If the company leadership fails to make the right decisions, the organization has the potential, like a Kodak, or taxi’s in the face of Uberization, to lose all value. Impact investments have the ability to become insured for losses, further buffering investors from market volatility.

There still remain questions concerning the future of the market. Look out in the coming years for a transitional acceleration in the attitudes and priorities of investors towards investments in people. We are always looking for great dialogue, so please share your thoughts!

Ean Garrett, J.D., is the author of two books, "Rebirth of a Dream" and "The Immovable Race", as well as the Chief Innovation Officer of the consulting firm, Infinite 8 Institute, L3C, specializing in the design and finance of social impact systems. Follow him on Twitter & IG: @eangarrett

The Micro-Health Impact Bond: A Howard Hospital Hypothetical | INFINITE 8 INSTITUTE by Ean Garrett

INTRODUCTION BY EAN GARRETT, J.D.

Chief Executive Officer, Infinite 8 Institute, L3C

There are often many formalities and procedures as well as other hierarchy of thought that the medical field has traditionally followed as a business model. With a new century, arrives an urgent need to transform the way we think about providing services in the healthcare sector. In a field full of specialists, the heavy integration of cross-sector disciplines in collective impact efforts, must also lead to the adoption of external viewpoints by the medical field and constant adaptation and learning.

The Micro-Health Impact Bond (Micro-HIB) is not the sole answer but it is a tool that has the potential to help get us there. There is a huge burden on the healthcare system from widespread issues, such as Depression, Heart Disease, and Pneumonia, which form a large sum of healthcare related costs. As a result there is a larger pressure on the healthcare system with a smaller set of resources. In such an environment, continued existence relies on the ability to navigate the current healthcare landscape, which is plush with uncertainty.

However, the strategic implementation of initiatives and the efficient utilization of resources in the form of Social Impact Bonds (SIBs), provides a unique opportunity to pilot innovative healthcare products and services that may provide potential systematic solutions. The Micro-Health Impact Bond (Micro-HIB), is a further step in that direction. The aim of the model is to provide creative financing for the design and implementation of innovative and prototypical global healthcare initiatives. The model brings outcomes to the forefront of the healthcare paradigm, and the consequence is putting the patient back at the center of everything.

The Micro-HIB, was created specifically to address the ailing issues at the forefront of hefty costs associated with patient readmissions and emergency admissions. However, we expect the model to widely expand in the coming years to include many other health subjects. In the private sector, if a client base continually returned with a similar problem unsolved there would be a strong effort to address the issue. When a person’s very existence and well-being are the issue, an even more valiant effort should be made to effectively and efficiently address a customer’s needs.

Over the past year we have communicated with healthcare professionals and researched the finest healthcare systems in the world. Every community and population is faced with a unique set of challenges, both measurable and immeasurable. The role and potential of various technologies in the future of medical science cannot be denied, such as wearable technologies. The Micro-SIB provides a replicable framework for healthcare professionals from which to launch the next life-saving technology or methodology. We hope that this will be the start of a much larger conversation concerning where we can go from here.

What are your medical institutions most pressing needs? Please share your experiences with us!

Ean Garrett, J.D.

Chief Innovation Officer, Infinite 8 Institute, L3C


How Foundations Can Pay for Success...Alone - The Uni-PFS | INFINITE 8 INSTITUTE by Ean Garrett

The Uni-PFS Model 1.0 is a foundation-based social finance product of Infinite 8 Institute, L3C.

The Uni-PFS Model 1.0 is a foundation-based social finance product of Infinite 8 Institute, L3C.

In the United States and across the world, there has been much talk and discussion of Impact Financing. Private philanthropists and foundations are no doubt, looking to ensure that the social and environmental programs they invest in, provide the highest return on investment. With recent volatility in global markets there is even more pressure for foundations and other donor-advised funds to perform. With the majority of philanthropic giving still taking on the form of grant-making, how can we reform the existing grant-making processes of foundations to make them more outcome-based?

According to a 2014 report by the Foundation Center, in 2012 the U.S. was home to 86,192 foundations, with $715 Billion in assets and $52 Billion in giving. In recent years, Pay for Success (PFS) initiatives, also known as Social Impact Bonds (SIBs), and other outcome-based models have taken the Philanthropic sector by storm. Yet, 99% of Philanthropic giving is still grant-based. This means that since there are still relatively few PFS initiatives in existence, and similarly few experts available around the country who know how to create them, many foundations are left without the technical expertise and experience to create such innovative outcome-based models. Furthermore, many PFS’s require the creation of legislation at the State, Federal, or Municipal level, multiple-stakeholders, and years of planning to be realized. How can foundations that want to maximize impact, without the complications of multiple stakeholders, legislation, and years of time and effort, still do so while retaining much of the structural integrity of the PFS Structure?

For the 99% of philanthropic grant-based giving, we propose a unilateral performance-based funding approach. The Unilateral Pay For Success (Uni-PFS) Model has been specially created with the majority of grant-based foundations in mind, who have yet to fully transition into an outcome-based philanthropic methodology. The model utilizes many of the facets of a PFS model or SIB. The major difference with the Uni-PFS model is that one foundation funds the entire project, including outcome payments for successful performance. In the Uni-PFS model, a foundation chooses its own programs to fund with assistance from an intermediary. The Uni-PFS model similarly funds 2-3 year pilot initiatives, mirroring the standard PFS approach, giving the service providing organization implementing programming on the ground, ample time to focus on achieving outcomes as opposed to fund raising. The intermediary in this case, still provides programmatic design expertise and consulting, assisting with data collection and analysis, as well as providing on-going technical assistance to service providers throughout the process. Also, outcome payments for successful performance are paid solely to the service provider, which go toward capacity-building and scaling the proven programmatic model for an additional 1-2 years.

Since the model is unilaterally funded, it provides flexibility for service providers to change methodologies in the middle of a pilot if current methods have proven ineffective. The unilateral approach also allows participating foundations and service providers to place more emphasis on qualitative metrics that are extremely important, yet difficult to measure, due to the fact that economic pressure of profit-seeking investors is taken out of the equation. Cost-savings are still able to be quantified, allowing elected official to participate in the Uni-PFS’s ultimate success, while also allowing them to distance themselves from a failure. This is all done without a dime of tax-payer expenditures. If the initiative is successful, the hope of course is that government will relieve philanthropists of their fiscal responsibility by using public funding sources to further the future of any successful and proven initiatives.

Ean Garrett, J.D., is the author of two books, "Rebirth of a Dream" and "The Immovable Race", as well as the Chief Innovation Officer of the consulting firm, Infinite 8 Institute, L3C, specializing in the design and finance of social impact systems. Follow him on Twitter & IG: @eangarrett


The Eco-Impact Bond (EIB): A Case for Banks to Micro-finance Green Initiatives | INFINITE 8 INSTITUTE by Ean Garrett

The Eco-Impact Bond is a financial product of Infinite 8 Institute.

The Eco-Impact Bond is a financial product of Infinite 8 Institute.

In the age of climate change, it will take a collective effort to create maximum ecological impact. It is the crowd that possesses the almighty scepter of change. But who is this crowd and how can the banking industry quickly engage them? As the largest generation in history, Millennials are quickly becoming the crowd. And according to the Millennial Disruption Index, 53% of Millennials don't believe their banks offer anything different from other banks. Considering the fact that 32% of Millennials see themselves as environmentalists, the ecological approach may be the lowest hanging fruit, and the most effective way to begin the conversation. In a sector such as the banking industry, that has changed little in the past century, innovation means survival in the new knowledge-based global economy. The slightest differentiation in technique or methodology is what delivers innovation. It is upon these grounds that we make a case for banking institutions to micro-finance innovative ecological initiatives through the Eco-Impact Bond, in order to create further environmental awareness and wider participation among the U.S. banked population in support of promising green projects.

The Eco-Impact Bond (EIB) is an environmentally responsible financial product and client offering, providing funding for innovative community-based ecological projects, exclusively available to clientele of participating institutions.

The Eco-Impact Bond, is a sustainable and eco-friendly product that allows existing and new banking clients to donate their checking accounts Annual Percentage Yield (APY) interest, to an Eco-Impact Fund (EIF) held in trust by the bank, issued out through an on-going grant process by an internal committee, and provided exclusively for innovative community-based environmental projects.

The novel features of the Eco-Impact Bond (EIB) are many. First, the EIB is a private transaction that is client funded as a result of donated APY interest from client checking accounts. Therefore, there is no need to create legislation or use taxpayer funds. The model is standard and thus easily replicable at various small to large banking institutions.

The model is also scalable, largely due to the collection of micro-donations in the form of annually accrued APY interest. Such micro-donations may be collected at a city, state, or national scale among a singular banking institution. Funds are placed in an Eco-Impact Fund (EIF), and given out by an internal Environmental Impact Committee (EIC) in the form of project-based grants. Existing and new clients have the option, similar to going "paperless", to choose to make all statements electronic. Clients opt into the program which automatically deducts any accrued APY from their checking account as a donation toward innovative local ecological projects. The ecological focus of the EIB is narrow, and differs from the UN's "Green Bonds" in that they are self-sustaining. While Green Bonds need investors to raise financing, with EIB's the customers act as philanthropic investors, sustaining the fund perpetually.

Additionally, because only current banking customers are able to participate in the program, it provides an incentive for environmentally and socially conscious customers to choose the participating banking institution over another offering less innovative and Eco-friendly financial products. The EIB also provides cost-saving measures by saving corporate philanthropic expenditures on similar inititives, while still gaining the benefits of positive public relations.

Clients participating in the program also receive a benefit through tax-incentives inherent with philanthropic giving. Community benefits are substantial through the support and implementation of local ecological projects by the banking institution and its customers.

There market opportunity is $483,119,472,288 Billion dollars in total value of consumer checking accounts in the US. How did we get that number? According to statistica.com, in 2014, there were 123.2 million households in the U.S., and during the same year the FDIC found that 88.4% of American households had checking accounts, which would be 108,908,808 million households. Additionally, according to a 2014 Los Angeles Times article, the average balance for U.S. checking accounts was $4,436. Now multiplying the number of U.S. households with the average balance of American checking accounts, and we are left with $483,119,472,288 Billion dollars in total account value among the banked in the U.S. Now multiply this number with a competitive .32 APY compounded once a year. The result is $1,545,982,311.32 Billion dollars in consumer compounded interest.

The FDIC also states there are 6,312 banks in America as of 2015, down from 6,799 the preceding year. If we split the total amount of APY compounded annually, evenly among the total number of U.S. FDIC insured banks, it leaves a possible $244,927.49 dollars per FDIC banking institution that would become available for local ecological projects if 100% of consumer checking accounts opted into the Eco-Impact Bond (EIB). But what if only 25% of consumer checking accounts opted into the EIB program? Then we would still be left with $61,231.87 per banking institution that becomes annually available to be granted out to innovative community and project-based ecological initiatives, such as rehabilitating homes or a local school to enhance energy efficiency, or urban agricultural projects addressing child hunger. The fund would also adhere to the annual 5% payout requirement of U.S. Foundations in accordance with the I.R.S. and U.S. Tax Code.

As a part of a settlement of the 2008 financial crisis, the U.S. Department of Justice forced Bank of America and Citigroup to donate funds to organizations as a result of their wrong-doing. Also, many banks have corporate philanthropic arms, which would allow the EIB model to easily integrate within existing community-based efforts. Furthermore, organizations are already allowing consumers to opt in and out of programs, such as the electronic banking program, allowing consumers to go "paperless" and save trees. The concept of proactively participating through philanthropic giving, engaging customers less passively than merely option to eliminate paper statements. We believe it is not only time to engage consumers more through innovative local ecological initiatives, but it is time to change the way we do banking.

Ean Garrett, J.D., is the author of two books, "Rebirth of a Dream" and "The Immovable Race", as well as the Chief Innovation Officer of the consulting firm, Infinite 8 Institute, L3C, specializing in the design and finance of social impact systems. Follow him on Twitter & IG: @eangarrett

The Micro-Social Impact Bond: A White Paper | INFINITE 8 INSTITUTE by Ean Garrett

The Micro-Social Impact Bond: A Framework for 21st Century Social Innovation

On September 8, 2015, Infinite 8 Institute, L3C released The Micro Social Impact Bond: A Framework for 21st Century Social Innovation, a White Paper on the Micro-Social Impact Bond. The report comprises seven months of research, development, and over 100 interviews to create a streamlined social impact financial product for the new global economy. The authors of the report include, Infinite 8 Institute, Chief Innovation Officer, Ean Garrett, Social Innovation Consultant, Aledia Kartchner, and Project Management Consultant, Walter Battle. The newly released report discusses key findings, addresses emerging financial instruments, while also including upcoming Social Impact Bond Federal legislation to watch for.  In order to elicit responses of the utmost frankness, the identities of each source has been kept anonymous. For more information visit www.infinite8institute.com/i8blog/microsibwhitepaper or contact Ean Garrett at ean@infinite8institute.com.


Lean Presentation: Macro vs. Micro Social Impact Bonds (Week 9) | INFINITE 8 INSTITUTE by Ean Garrett

Narrated by the Chief Innovation Officer of Infinite 8 Institute, Ean Garrett, J.D., week nine of the Infinite 8 Micro-Social Impact Bond Project - Lean Series brought us a step closer to completion with 97 interviews. This week will discuss differences between the larger Macro Social Impact Bonds, and the Micro Social Impact Bond Model. We also mention new details concerning the the streamlined MicroSIB v. 2.5. Keep up with our 10 week journey by visiting infinite8institute.com/i8blog/leanweek9microsib

Lean Business Presentation: The Micro-Social Impact Bond (Week 8) | INFINITE 8 INSTITUTE by Ean Garrett

Narrated by the Chief Innovation Officer of Infinite 8 Institute, Ean Garrett, J.D., week eight of the Infinite 8 Micro-Social Impact Bond Project - Lean Series brings us a step closer to our goal of 100 interviews. This week discusses the social impact possibilities of expanded outcome-based programming among Community Foundations across the United States. We also discuss Social Impact Bonds currently in the implementation phase. Keep up with our 10 week journey by visiting infinite8institute.com/i8blog/

Lean Business Presentation: The Micro-Social Impact Bond (Week 7) | INFINITE 8 INSTITUTE by Ean Garrett

Narrated by the Chief Innovation Officer of Infinite 8 Institute, Ean Garrett, J.D., week seven of the Infinite 8 Micro-Social Impact Bond Project - Lean Series, continued exploring the emerging space of Social Impact Finance. This week we heavily engaged the early childhood sector across the U.S., with many opportunities to experiment with innovative models in the stead of government funding. Keeping up pace, we look forward to what awaits next week. Keep up with our 10 week journey by visiting infinite8institute.com/i8blog/

Lean Business Presentation: The Micro-Social Impact Bond (Week 6) | INFINITE 8 INSTITUTE by Ean Garrett

Narrated by the Chief Innovation Officer of Infinite 8 Institute, Ean Garrett, J.D., week six of the Infinite 8 Micro-Social Impact Bond Project - Lean Series answered many questions in the social impact space. This week covers our findings concerning the trending topics of Corporate Social Responsibility, Equity Crowd-funding, and Bitcoin as they relate to furthering social innovation.  Heading down hill, we are encouraged by our progress. Keep up with our journey over the next 10 weeks by visiting infinite8institute.com/i8blog/leanweek6microsib

Lean Business Presentation: The Micro-Social Impact Bond (Week 5) | INFINITE 8 INSTITUTE by Ean Garrett

Narrated by the Chief Innovation Officer of Infinite 8 Institute, Ean Garrett, J.D., week five of the Infinite 8 Micro-Social Impact Bond Project - Lean Series brought enhanced clarity. We met globally with wealthy individuals, foundations, as well as with leaders in international education. As we further collect data concerning the possibilities and international desire for social impact financing, we are becoming more comfortable in an uncharted space. Passing the halfway mark, we are eager to continue dialogue with the global community. Keep up with our journey over the next 10 weeks by visiting infinite8institute.com/i8blog

Lean Business Presentation: The Micro-Social Impact Bond (Week 4) | INFINITE 8 INSTITUTE by Ean Garrett

Narrated by the Chief Innovation Officer of Infinite 8 Institute, Ean Garrett, J.D., week four of the Infinite 8 Micro-Social Impact Bond Project - Lean Series was fruitful. We interviewed banking institutions concerning the Community Reinvestment Act (CRA), Social Impact Bonds (SIBs), and Micro-Social Impact Bonds (Micro-SIBs), gaining impressive headway. Furthermore, we interviewed Venture Capitalist and Angel Investors and what we discovered was significant. We are extremely motivated going into week 5 as we hit the halfway mark, and look forward to speaking with more philanthropists, educational leaders, and private corporations in the US, UK, and China this upcoming week. Keep up with our 10 week journey by visiting infinite8institute.com/i8blog. 

Lean Business Presentation: The Micro-Social Impact Bond (Week 3) | Infinite 8 Institute by Ean Garrett

Narrated by the Chief Innovation Officer of Infinite 8 Institute, Ean Garrett, J.D., week three of the Infinite 8 Micro-Social Impact Bond Project - Lean Series was insightful. We interviewed non-profit and philanthropic stakeholders and what we found was surprising. Additionally, we added two exciting new partners, Georgetown University and FreshIP in London. We discussed outcomes vs. credit when considering financing social impact using the Micro-SIB Model. Keep up with our journey over the next 10 weeks by visiting infinite8institute.com/i8blog

Lean Business Presentation: The Micro-Social Impact Bond (Week 2) | INFINITE 8 INSTITUTE by Ean Garrett

Narrated by the Chief Innovation Officer of Infinite 8 Institute, Ean Garrett, J.D., week two of the Infinite 8 Micro-Social Impact Bond Project - Lean Series was filled with discovery. Our interviews varied from venture capital and financial management firms to green and sustainable energy companies. We further streamlined our direction and propositional value of the social impact financing process hoping to maximize overall utility. We look forward to next week already! Keep up with our journey over the next 10 weeks by visiting infinite8institute.com/i8blog