Rikers Island: The First Social Impact Bond in the United States


John Olson and Andrea Phillips, Goldman Sachs

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Volume 9, Issue 1 | April 18, 2013

In August 2012, Goldman Sachs Bank’s Urban Investment Group (UIG) announced the first social impact bond (SIB) in the United States, a $9.6 million loan it would make to support the delivery of therapeutic services to 16- to 18-year-olds incarcerated on Rikers Island. The loan will be repaid based on the actual and projected cost savings realized by the New York City Department of Correction as a result of the expected decrease in recidivism. This unique public-private partnership between the City of New York, MDRC, the Osborne Association, Bloomberg Philanthropies, and Goldman Sachs leverages high-quality nonprofit capacity, private-sector capital, and philanthropic support to address a pressing community challenge.