Social Responsibility and Sustainability

Positive investment and social finance

The University has invested more than £150 million in low carbon technology, climate-related research and businesses that directly benefit the environment since 2010.

Investing for Good - a Social Enterprise and Social Investment Strategy

In December 2019, the University approved a new Social Enterprise and Social Investment Strategy that sets out the University's vision to be recognised as the leading UK university for social enterprise and investments by academic year 2023-24. The University will do this by taking a rigorous approach to investments that deliver an acceptable return, whilst also delivering multiple benefits for society, the economy and the environment.

Recent social investments

Nov 2020: University invests £5 million in green projects

The University has invested £5 million in green projects after becoming the first university in the UK to sign up to HSBC’s new green deposits programme. THe University also received an overall score of A in an annual assessment by the UN-supported Principles for Responsible Investment, the world's leading proponent of responsible investment. 

University invests £5 million in green projects

Nov 2020: University encourages HEIs to make social impact investments

Dave Gorman, the University's Director of Social Responsibility & Sustainability, co-authors a blog for Big Society Capital setting out the University's approach to social impact investing and calling for Higher Education Institutions (HEIs) to work with each other and the social impact investment sector to achieve greater social impact.

Universities as social impact investors: the snowball effect of value 

£60m low carbon investment

The University has moved £60m of its investments into businesses that directly benefit the environment. The money has been invested in two dedicated funds that support a cleaner, more sustainable and climate-friendly future.

Multi-million investment backs sustainable, low-carbon companies

£1.5m social enterprise investment

The University has committed to invest £1.5 million in Big Issue Invest, a social investment organisation which is a group of subsidiaries of the Big Issue Magazine Group, one of the best known social enterprises in the United Kingdom. The investment is used to offer loans to social enterprise, charities and profit-with-purpose businesses.

£1m investment will be force for social good

£500,000 of the total investment is with Power Up Scotland.

Power Up Scotland Impact Report 2020

Find out more about why the University invests in social enterprises.

Why the University of Edinburgh is investing £1.5m in social enterprises

Student-run social investment fund

Prosper is the first student-run social investment fund in the UK; founded and run entirely by students at the University of Edinburgh.

Find out more about the student social investment club

Edinburgh Local community grants scheme

The Edinburgh Local Community Grants scheme supports the development of projects, community activities and sustainable local action.

Find out about the scheme

Related: Grants for staff and students

Sustainable campus fund Student project grant Staff project grant