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Partner Spotlight on: New Power Labs

New Power Labs is one of the IRP Ecosystem Builder Partners, enabling supports to better reach Social Purpose Organizations in their investment readiness and social finance / social innovation journey.

New Power Labs mobilizes change through research, benchmarking, practice, and education.  They work in partnership across the capital spectrum, from philanthropy to impact investing to venture capital and bank financing.  

Narinder Dhami joined us in conversation with our first Lunch and Learn session from New Power Labs to discuss Shifting Power, Moving Capital. Narinder emphasized that the support from IRP has allowed New Power Labs to deepen their important research.

We understand there is not only limited data, but a big gap across diversity types in Canada about who can access capital. From this limited data, there are enough data points to demonstrate that capital (venture capital, impact investing, philanthropy, or traditional bank financing, etc) does not flow to diverse communities. These include Black and Indigenous, women, non-binary, diverse sexual orientation, rural/non-rural – capital does not come into these communities in a way that allows for individual or broader community prosperity.

With regards to diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI), there’s an interest in driving change, and the acknowledgement that there’s disproportionate impacts on Indigenous peoples, communities of colour, women and other overlooked and underserved communities – this has become overwhelmingly clear. There is interest and good intentions, but translating these good intentions into action is where this gap still continues to exist.

“Yet, action towards equity in how capital flows remains fragmented, siloed, and slow.”

New Power Labs was created 2 years ago, and are wrapping up their pilot phase. New Power Labs is a collaborative platform to inform, co-create, and mobilize new approaches and practices to flow capital more equitably in Canada towards currently underserved and underinvested communities. They are a partnership of many organizations including DUCA Impact Lab, CoastCapital, Ontario Trillium Foundation, Mariam Assefa Fund, Community Foundations of Canada, among other notable partnerships.

New Power Labs is a “think-and-do-tank” dedicated to building a more transparent, inclusive, and equitable financial future. Their collaborative platform informs, co-creates and mobilizes new approaches and practices to flow capital more equitably in Canada.

This change is mobilized by:

  • conducting research to uncover insights
  • sharing actionable tools and practices
  • aggregating and synthesizing existing knowledge and resources
  • benchmarking organizations’ performance on equity
  • educating and convening practitioners and policymakers

New Power labs is building a movement for capital change.

New Power Labs increases the amount of capital flowing to under served communities by mobilizing with a network of peers. They are working with partners including those who deploy capital informed by community to influence how that capital shifts. To do this they are working on shifting policies, regulations and practices to expand access to capital.

As part of New Power Labs’ IRP work, they are executing a four-part research strategy to understand systemic challenges across social finance. This includes:

  • Mapping power structures and understanding how power is held in capital accumulation and capital flows
  • A collection of disaggregated data on capital deployers and recipients
  • Understanding the dynamics behind who controls the flow of capital
  • Understanding the dynamics behind who gets access to the flow of capital

Read New Power Labs’ In the Dark Report below.

Click here to check out the groundbreaking In The Dark report by New Power Labs in English or French.


Get to know more Ecosystem Builder Partners and how they work to support Social Purpose Organizations by viewing our IRP Ecosystem.