ESG in Venture Capital: Interview with Blue Future Partners (VC Fund of Funds)

This post is by David from David Teten's blog

#ESGinVCBlue Future Partners, a venture capital fund of funds, recently interviewed me on ESG in venture capital. Here’s what I said:

In your career in tech and VC, how has your focus on ESG responsibility changed over time?

There’s an old line from Victor Hugo: “If a man is not a [liberal] at twenty, it is because he has no heart, and if he is one at forty, it is because he has no brains.” To some extent, I’ve followed the reverse path. 

Earlier in my career, I thought of myself as a libertarian and didn’t spend many calories thinking about the ESG impact of my work. But then I had a family, and I realized that many of our biggest social challenges have no libertarian solution, and no one has built a functioning libertarian society. A lot of these challenges became grossly apparent in 2020: social instability, climate crisis, public health crises, national security crises, disinformation. If I don’t think through the social implications of my work, then I’m free-riding on the hard work everyone else around me has done to make a liveable society. In the short run, I might make more money by ignoring all my social responsibilities. But in the longer run, the result is a dysfunctional society.

I see a clear cultural change happening in the investing universe, as more people pay attention to ESG objectives and apply an ESG filter to their investments. Bank of America has predicted $20T to flow in ESG (Read more…)