It can be dangerous to try count things that can’t be counted. Sometimes the answer is “we don’t, and can’t, know”. Sometimes the answer is qualitative.
You can wrestle with beautiful or thorny questions through first-hand, on-the-ground, stories that don’t scale. You can soak, chew, listen, and be influenced but you cannot weigh, measure, rank, and sort.
Many people will impose frameworks that have worked for them in one area, in another. Like the investment analyst who thinks you can apply an investment process to everything. Then ESG (Environmental, Social, and Corporate Governance) or Philanthropy come along, and instead of using wholly different tools... the spreadsheets get whipped out.
In investing, the decision ultimately boils down to buy or sell. With a lot of issues that matter... it is vastly more complicated than that. The rules of money simply don’t apply to many of the decisions we want to make.
Yet they often still require financing. They still require capital to be allocated to them. The temptation that needs to be resisted is to force everything to become a business. Where how something needs to be financed is the key driver of the identity of what something is.
Instead of having the wisdom to sort between things that can (and should) make money, and things that make a meaningful life.