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How to Research Investment Chains


The investment chain the “upstream” in the river metaphor is where much of the money for a project comes from, particularly during the development phase. Money flows downstream to the project from shareholders, lenders, insurers and other investors. Some of these actors may fund the project directly, while others may channel their funds to the project indirectly through one or more parent companies.

Each sub-section describes how to research and analyze the four main categories of actors commonly found in investment chains: Corporations, shareholders, lenders, and others, such as contractors and insurers. The subsections define the categories; provide tips on how to evaluate them as pressure points for advocacy; suggest methods and tools for uncovering them; and illustrate the process with a case study.

Illustration © International Institute for Environment and Development & Inclusive Development International (2015)