Manifesting in European Parliament

“Put impact at the centre of EU policymaking,” reads the Investing for Impact Manifesto. For the launch of this document, a centre of policymaking opened its doors.  

Ben DeVries |
Impact Manifesto on the table at the European Parliament

The European Parliament hosted stakeholders from Impact Europe and National Advisory Boards on impact investing to present key ideas from the Manifesto during a breakfast event. Lying beside cups of coffee and juice glasses etched with the Parliament’s logo were cards outlining the Manifesto’s key points:   

1. Put Impact at the centre of EU policymaking 
2. Make all EU funding impact funding 
3. Deliver on the SDGs by 2030 

Impact Europe CEO Roberta Bosurgi gave opening remarks, calling the Manifesto an ambitious vision and roadmap for policymaking at European and national levels. “It recognises the role,” said Roberta, “of impact investors as a key solution to tackle the social and environmental challenges we all face.”  

The host of the event was Monica Semedo, Member of European Parliament (MEP) from Renew Europe, who highlighted notable policies that enable impact. She discussed the case of her home country, Luxembourg, where 15,000 people are employed in the social economy, and lauded Commissioner Nicolas Schmit, also hailing from Luxembourg, for his work in establishing the Social Economy Intergroup.  

Looking ahead towards budgets and elections, MEP Semedo remarked: “It is important that the next ESF+ is negotiated by MEPs that support impact investment and the social economy. That’s an important message to spread in the upcoming European elections.” 


Wish list  

Following these introductions, Jana Bour, Impact Europe’s Head of Policy, launched a dialogue with representatives of Eurosif, Philea and Euclid Network. These three organisations are frequently in conversation with Impact Europe about how best to represent the needs of sustainable investors, foundations and social enterprises at the level of European and national policies. And speaking of national policies, representatives of the National Advisory Boards of Belgium, France and the Netherlands were present to add their perspectives.  

As these stakeholders joined in an informal dialogue about their policy wishes, they exemplified a collaborative spirit in the room. Further evidence of collaboration: FAIR, Foundation Netherlands Advisory Board on Impact Investing, Impact Finance Belgium, Social Impact Agenda per l’Italia and SpainNAB are all current signatories on the Impact Manifesto. 

Policy wishes mentioned over the breakfast table included reviving the social taxonomy, activating retail investors for impact and a hope that the next generation of European leaders move forward instead of backward on impact goals. From the hopeful to the practical, wishes showed overlap with the recommendations in the Investing for Impact Manifesto.  

“The Manifesto is filled with policy recommendations,” said Roberta. “We hope it’s only the beginning of the journey.”  


Manifesting more  

The launch event convened a crowd that was influential – but limited in number. Let’s go bigger. If you or your organisation support the messages included in the Manifesto, the authors would encourage you to endorse it – please contact Jana for details. 

Next up for Impact Europe’s policy work, we’re launching a new podcast – Electing Impact – where Jana will interview the experts that helped shape the Manifesto’s action points. Stay tuned!