guidelines on social impact assessment p.1Eurodiaconia is pleased to publish a document entitled “Guidelines on social impact assessment” which can be downloaded here. It aims to assist members to better understand social and economic impact assessment and consider if such assessment methods, or elements of them, might be useful for their organisation. The document also outlines some concerns that exist about impact assessment/measurement, and how some of these concerns could be addressed. It gives information about some of the main tools available and proposes some issues to consider when considering different tools. Some member organisations have carried out social and economic impact assessment or are developing the use of impact assessment tools and this document also includes their experiences to inform other members. Finally it also includes information about EU level activities in this field of impact assessment/measurement that may have an influence on how impact measurement is viewed and what type of impact assessment is promoted.

There is increased interest both from funders, governmental and private, and service provider organisations, to show the impact of their work. This is partly due to financial pressure on public authorities in the context of the financial crisis, leading them to be more demanding on the services they finance. There is also increased interest from private finance to invest in social enterprises. Finally, individual donors are increasingly interested in understanding the impact of their donations. This has led to a growing interest in concepts such as ‘social return’, social value, social and economic impact, and increased interest in the assessment of these.These were the drivers behind the production of this document. For further info of questions please contact Alexander Elu in the secretariat.