ULI Evaluating Social Value: taking stock of industry practice in Europe

ULI has commissioned The Good Economy, working with COCREATIF, to carry out a review of the current perceptions and practice of measuring social value among investors in real estate across Europe. In a poll at ULI’s 2019 conference, attendees registered their strong interest in the need for a better understanding of social value, how it fits with fiduciary responsibilities and how to measure it. Eime is a lead researcher working closely with Sarah Forster (CEO) and her colleagues at The Good Economy.

The research will be used to develop a conceptual framework on how to define and measure social value drawing on industry practice and emerging standards for impact measurement and management within the broader financial sector. The framework will aim to be useful to all stakeholders within the real estate industry.

This is a timely and important project because the potential positive impact of development on communities and the environment is an increasing priority for real estate investors, developers and local government. The value of real estate and development is more than financial. They are about ‘places’ and ‘people’ and therefore have social value. Investors and developers are increasingly becoming aware that social value matters to the overall performance of their businesses, including financial performance especially in the long- term. After all, a thriving economy needs healthy people and well-functioning places.

The project commenced at the end of September 2020. The findings of the research are due to be published at the ULI European Conference in February 2021.

Please get in touch if you have any views on the topic or suggestions for best practice.