Finding Balance – CST #1

While working through this week’s readings and participating in group sessions, the concept that coming to mind was finding balance. Finding a balance between fiduciary duty and creating the best social outcomes when allocating capital. Finding a balance between CST Principles such as the common good, the preferential option for the poor and the common good. In talking with my colleagues, many of us shared similar thoughts about the inherent conflicts between the CST Principles when we talked about how there are often tradeoffs or winners and losers in each investment decision we make. The most concrete example I often think about is the concept of climate change. What is the math on deciding the net moral benefits of a fossil fuel power plant for a group of people who have no access to power and will be able to see improvements in healthcare, education, and quality of life versus the potential cost to the global climate?

As an investor I am used to making decisions involving calculated risks and incomplete data, but the field of economics is deep, well researched and has many best practice frameworks that I can rely on to help guide my decision making. Upon adding the extra dimension of CST I’ve come to feel as though the math goes from algebra to calculus with an exponential increase in the number of factors and outcomes to be considered. While it often feels as though the frameworks of how modern social economics are being built in real time, I am hopeful that the collaboration between participants in this group will further increase my knowledge of the frameworks and best practices my colleagues are using in the areas of conflict between CST principles and that I will be able to later share this knowledge more concretely with my colleagues.

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