Mission and History

A Track Record of Accomplishment 

The CIF team has a long history in the field of community and impact finance. CIF is led by Dr. Michael Swack who has over 35 years of experience in the field as a practitioner, researcher, teacher, and policy analyst. CIF’s staff and fellows are highly regarded researchers, practitioners, and policy analysts uniquely qualified to work across multiple disciplines.

Image of Michael Swack Talking to a Person

 “Advancing Impact Finance for Communities”

The Carsey School of Public Policy's Center for Impact Finance (CIF) at the University of New Hampshire addresses the role that access to capital plays in turning the tide on widening income inequality. CIF engages in both the practical aspects of developing financing tools, products, and institutions and the public policy connected to promoting the ability of individuals, businesses, and communities to gain full access to the financing that is critical to economic opportunity.

With a successful track record of working within communities and as respected thought leaders in the field, CIF conducts original applied research, develops initiatives, designs programs, and implements financing products, projects, and policies that address societal challenges. CIF’s mission of advancing impact finance is to:

  • Develop, design, and implement policies and practices to help ensure that low-income, low-wealth, and other disadvantaged people and communities have access to affordable, responsible financial products and services.
  • Equip community development finance practitioners with practical, high-level skills as well as access to the tools and networks they need to succeed in a rapidly changing ecosystem.
  • Convene a wide range of stakeholders to promote discussion and action that connect capital with institutions and initiatives that address economic and social inequality, minimize the opportunity gap, and strengthen economic, ecological, and family resilience.

We accomplish our mission by building effective public/private/philanthropic partnerships that advance the field of impact finance engaging in applied research and policy analysis, providing technical assistance to institutions and organizations, and educating future leaders in the field of impact finance.