Lorenzo Bernasconi

Former Managing Director

Lorenzo Bernasconi was Managing Director at The Rockefeller Foundation. His responsibilities included leading the Zero Gap portfolio, an effort initiated in 2015 to create the next generation of investment products with the potential to mobilize large-scale investment to address global challenges. Zero Gap includes a grant portfolio of nearly 50 projects across 28 countries, as well as a $60M catalytic capital investment fund managed by Rockefeller Foundation Impact Investment Management, a wholly-owned subsidiary of the Foundation with the aim of mobilizing more than $1 billion in new investment to address the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

Lorenzo has been featured in numerous publications including the Financial Times, Project Syndicate, and MarketWatch and is a frequent speaker at finance and industry events. Prior to joining the Foundation, he worked at Dalberg Global Development Advisors, the Boston Consulting Group, and the investment banking division of UBS.

Lorenzo holds dual Ecuadorian and Swiss citizenship. He received a bachelor’s degree in economics at the London School of Economics, a Ph.D. at Cambridge University, and completed a post-doctoral fellowship at Columbia University’s Earth Institute. He sits on several boards including Spring Bank, a Bronx-based community bank, and Emergent, a nonprofit dedicated to tropical forest conservation through the mobilization of large-scale private finance.

Authored Content

  • May 04 2020
    Blog Post Moving to Blunt the Impact of Covid-19 The Covid-19 pandemic has exposed deep inequities and vulnerabilities in even the world’s most advanced economies just as it tests our collective abilities to respond. Government, as well as private companies and foundations, must now wrestle with both a viral menace and a cratering economy, with hundreds of millions of people around the world now […] Lorenzo Bernasconi, Mike Muldoon
  • Feb 24 2020
    Impact Through Innovation Lorenzo Bernasconi on Catalytic Capital To begin the new year, we asked some of our staff members, “How can we continue to innovate to drive social impact?” For Lorenzo Bernasconi, Managing Director for Innovative Finance at The Rockefeller Foundation, leveraging philanthropic capital will create a lasting impact, from the abating the climate crisis to raising educational outcomes, to promoting the […]
  • Jun 04 2019
    Blog Post 3 Ways Sustainable Finance Is Reshaping Asia's Capital Markets This year, Asia will account for half of the world’s GDP growth. And while this has undoubtedly improved living standards and reduced poverty in recent years, such gains have come at a cost. Degraded natural resources and ecosystems, worsened water stresses, and increased levels of hazardous waste, comprise just some of the many unintended byproducts of […] Deepali Khanna, Lorenzo Bernasconi
  • Jun 26 2017
    Blog Post What Does It Take to Mobilize Billions of Dollars to Promote the Well-Being of Humanity? The promise of innovative finance is to unlock billions—if not trillions—of dollars in private sector capital to address the world’s most critical challenges. This big and bold promise is making innovative finance fashionable these days. Policy makers are taking note as they grapple with the sticker shock of the estimated $5 to $7 trillion that […] Lorenzo Bernasconi, Saadia Madsbjerg
  • Jun 15 2016
    Blog Post Philanthropy's Role in Financing a Climate-Resilient World In April of this year, leaders from 177 countries signed the Paris Agreement, with a goal to put the world on track to keep global warming below 2°C in order to avoid the catastrophic impacts of a warming planet. While mitigating the future impacts of climate change is crucial, there is a concurrent need to […] Barbara Buchner, Lorenzo Bernasconi