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Webcast: Development Finance Institutions and the Canadian Development Context

November 19, 2014

This webcast is the first of a series of events that AKFC hosted on topics related to emerging economies.

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Webcast presenters included:

Brett House, Senior Fellow with CIGI, is a Visiting Scholar at Massey College, University of Toronto and Lecturer in the Economics Department and a Senior Fellow at the Jeanne Sauvé Foundation at McGill University. His research looks at the effects of trade liberalization on growth, the rise of emerging markets, and options to improve sovereign debt restructuring. He is also an advisor to and partner in Tau+ Investment Management, a start-up impact fund.

Gerhard Pries, Managing Partner and Chief Executive Officer, is founder and CEO of Sarona Asset Management Inc., formerly MEDA Investments Inc. In over 20 years of frontier market investing, Mr. Pries has been a founder of a number of firms and funds, including Sarona, MicroVest Capital Management, MicroCap Capital, and the Latin America Challenge Investment Fund. He currently serves on the Investment Committee for Grand Challenges Canada and on the boards of MicroVest Holdings, ImpactAssets, and numerous companies in the Sarona portfolio.

Karim Harji is a co-founder and partner at Purpose Capital, an impact investment advisory firm that mobilizes all forms of capital — financial, human and social — to accelerate social progress. Karim is a Senior Research Associate at the Carleton Centre for Community Innovation at Carleton University, and teaches social entrepreneurship in the Faculty of Applied Science and Engineering at the University of Toronto. He is the co-founder of SocialFinance.ca, and serves on the Boards of the Responsible Investment Association, Small Change Fund, and CanadaHelps.

Dr. Linda Jones is the Director of SME/Investment at MEDA (Mennonite Economic Development Associates) and an international expert in the field of inclusive private sector development including. Linda has extensive strategy and implementation experience across Asia and Africa through long-term positions and consulting assignments for implementing agencies, multi-lateral organisations and private sector entities. Following a successful career as a business executive, Linda was Senior Technical Advisor at the Aga Khan Foundation in Geneva, Technical Director at MEDA in Canada, and Director of the Centre for Women’s Leadership at the Coady International Institute. She has contributed to the overall advancement of the pro-poor economic development field through positions such as the Chair of the Board of Directors of the SEEP Network, Editor of the Enterprise Development and Microfinance Journal, Founder and Chair of Women Advancing Microfinance, Canada, and Advisor to the Eurasia Foundation on women’s entrepreneurship. Linda has published extensively on inclusive economic development – including the primary resource on Agricultural Value Chain Finance with the FAO –  and has been a facilitator/trainer with the Southern New Hampshire University, the SEEP Network, the Boulder Institute, and the International Labour Organisation among others. Linda was a Commonwealth Scholar and holds a Ph.D. in Anthropology from McMaster University and a diploma in Peace and Conflict Studies from Conrad Grebel College.


Undertaken with the financial support of:



November 19, 2014
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