The vast majority of investors throughout the world have a single goal: to earn the highest financial return. These socially-neutral investors only want to maximize their risk-adjusted returns and would not accept a lower financial return from a socially beneficial investment. An increasing number of socially-motivated investors have other goals besides maximizing profits. They seek to align their investments with their social values (value alignment) and, where possible, to enable the companies in which they invest to create more social value (social value creation).
The thrust of this article is that, while it is relatively easy to achieve value alignment, actually creating social value is far more difficult.