9th March 2023

How do we unlock the power of partnerships to tackle big social challenges? With Tri-Sector’s Kevin Tan

Welcome to 20/30 Visions, a new Bridges series in which we ask experts and thought-leaders from around the globe: what needs to change if we want to build a more sustainable and inclusive future in the next decade? And how do we make that change happen?

Governments around the world are grappling with a huge array of increasingly complex social challenges. Outcomes-focused projects – sometimes called ‘pay for success’, or previously ‘social impact bonds’ – have shown clear potential to help address these challenges, by creating innovative partnerships between governments, philanthropy, the social sector and the private sector, based on a shared vision of success. But globally, this market remains small, especially relative to the scale of the problem. Why is that? And what can we do to do unlock its true potential?

To discuss this, we’re joined by Kevin Tan of Tri-Sector Associates. Based in Singapore, Tri-Sector is working with various east Asian governments on outcomes-based projects – and experimenting with new ways of adapting the model so it is better aligned with standard government procurement and budgeting systems. In our interview, Kevin argues:

  • Why pay for success can be a vital tool for solving big social challenges
  • Why it’s hard for Governments to ‘fail’, especially in Asia
  • The problems with the standard ‘social impact bond’ model
  • Two modifications that can help solve the ‘product/ market fit’ issue
  • The importance of working within existing government systems
  • And more


Watch our conversation here:

Or you can download Kevin’s insights to read as a PDF below:

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