Tech for good investing has grown markedly over the last decade. Now we have to prove it can do well in tough times.
The polycrisis of 2022 is likely to continue this year with many countries going into recession. The challenges, which the startups we back address, are getting worse before they get better.
The global energy crisis has made it obvious that we need to shift to a renewable system of energy production. Thankfully there’s now a bulge of capital working on climate tech. However, it has also highlighted how far behind we are when it comes to changing our infrastructure to allow for that transition. Expect many things to break along the way.
We’ll see inequality and many other social indicators get worse in 2023. Teachers are grappling with severe problems including hundreds of thousands of children missing from the UK education system and the impact of the pandemic on pupil development and mental health. The conditions for frontline workers are getting tougher as the cost of living and inflation bite. Strikes are just one symptom of deep social malaise.
In health, the NHS is facing incredibly difficult times (and isn’t unique amongst healthcare systems internationally). Worn down by the pandemic, it is now facing new problems. All at the same time as a staffing crisis from changing demographics and underinvestment continues to unfold.
These challenges are opportunities for tech for good startups to help. But, because of the broader economic uncertainty, it will undoubtedly be more difficult for all startups (including tech for good startups) to raise money. Our experience is that good companies will still find investment but it will take more time and work on the part of founders to make the grade.
So 2023 will be tough. But we believe the tech for good community is up to the challenge and that by taking on these problems, we’ll be able to prove once and for all that you can do well by doing good.
This is a story from The Practical Optimist, our regular newsletter for Tech for Good investors.