Patient Capital
The Challenges and Promises of Long-Term Investing
Victoria Ivashina and Josh Lerner

Editions

How to overcome barriers to the long-term investments that are essential for solving the world’s biggest problems

There has never been a greater need for long-term investments to tackle the world’s most difficult problems, such as climate change and decaying infrastructure. And it is increasingly unlikely that the public sector will be willing or able to fill this gap. If these critical needs are to be met, the major pools of long-term, patient capital—including pensions, sovereign wealth funds, university endowments, and wealthy individuals and families—will have to play a large role. In this accessible and authoritative account of long-term capital investment, two leading experts on the subject, Harvard Business School professors Victoria Ivashina and Josh Lerner, highlight the significant hurdles facing long-term investors and propose concrete ways to overcome these difficulties.

Presenting the best evidence in an engaging way by using memorable stories and examples, Patient Capital describes how large investors increasingly want and need long-run investments that have the potential to deliver greater returns than those in the public markets. Yet success in such investments has been the exception. Performance has suffered from both the limitations of investors and the internal structure of their fund managers, often resulting in the wrong incentives and a lack of long-term planning.

Yet the challenges facing long-term investors can be surmounted and the rewards are potentially large, both for investors and society as a whole. Patient Capital shows how to make long-term investment work better for everyone.

Victoria Ivashina is the Lovett-Learned Professor of Finance at Harvard Business School. Josh Lerner is the Jacob H. Schiff Professor of Investment Banking at Harvard Business School and the author of, among other books, Boulevard of Broken Dreams: Why Public Efforts to Boost Entrepreneurship and Venture Capital Have Failed—and What to Do about It (Princeton).