By Woody Tasch
Intro by globaloneness
In this complete interview, author Woody Tasch illustrates the concept of Slow Money. He describes how the current economic crisis evokes fundamental questions about the future of capitalism and provides a unique opportunity to reorganize financial markets for sustainability. He explains the simple notion that if we slow down, we can enjoy life more, and challenges us to bring this concept into financial markets.
Woody Tasch is chairman and president of Slow Money, a 501c3 formed in 2008 to catalyze the flow of investment capital to small food enterprises and to promote new principles of fiduciary responsibility to support sustainable agriculture and the emergence of a restorative economy.
Woody pioneered the integration of asset management and philanthropic purpose in the 1990s as treasurer of the Jessie Smith Noyes Foundation and was founding chairman of the Community Development Venture Capital Alliance. For ten years, through 2008, he was chairman of Investors’ Circle, a network of angel investors, funds, family offices, and foundations that has invested $133 million in 200 sustainability-promoting ventures and venture funds, since 1992. Woody is the author of Inquiries into the Nature of Slow Money: Investing as if Food, Farms, and Fertility Mattered (Chelsea Green Publishing Company).
Chelsea Green writes:
Could there ever be an alternative stock exchange dedicated to slow, small, and local? Could a million American families get their food from CSAs? What if you had to invest 50 percent of your assets within 50 miles of where you live?
Such questions—at the heart of slow money—represent the first steps on our path to a new economy.
Inquiries into the Nature of Slow Money presents an essential new strategy for investing in local food systems and introduces a group of fiduciary activists who are exploring what should come after industrial finance and industrial agriculture. Theirs is a vision for investing that puts soil fertility into return-on-investment calculations and serves people and place as much at it serves industry sectors and markets.
Leading the charge is Woody Tasch—whose decades of work as a venture capitalist, foundation treasurer, and entrepreneur now shed new light on a truer, more beautiful, more prudent kind of fiduciary responsibility. He offers an alternative vision to the dusty old industrial concepts of the nineteenth and twentieth centuries when dollars, and the businesses they financed, lost their connection to place; slow money, on the other hand, is firmly rooted in the new economic, social, and environmental realities of the 21st century.
Inquiries into the Nature of Slow Money is a call to action for designing capital markets built around not extraction and consumption but preservation and restoration.
Is it a movement or is it an investment strategy? Yes.