esela is a network of lawyers, advisors, academics and entrepreneurs. We are particularly interested in the role of the law and lawyers in creating a sustainable and inclusive economy that promotes positive social impact.
In practice, this includes impact investing, social entrepreneurship, business and human rights, the response of business to the climate emergency, ‘profit with purpose’ and related disciplines.
Our aim is to promote a better understanding of the law in these practice areas, and so to support the development and growth of a more sustainable and inclusive economy.
Our members range from law firms and academic institutions to specialist individuals.
In April 2013, the European Commission asked the consultants ICF and the UK law firm Bates Wells to undertake a study to map the shape and nature of social enterprise activity in 29 European countries as part of its flagship ‘Social Business Initiative’.
The idea of Legal Network for Social Impact developed naturally from the mapping study, as it became clear that no such network of experts existed. At a roundtable event hosted by the European Economic and Social Committee in Brussels in January 2015, esela was formed.
esela hosts and organises conferences and other events, and works with partners on specific projects related to law and social impact.
esela produces and exchanges resources, and undertakes research and analysis on legal issues affecting the impact economy. The input of specialists in our network informs policy and legal development with respect to building a sustainable economy on national and international levels.
esela has the potential to be an important source of knowledge and expertise that can highlight and share good practice across jurisdictions, helping learn from each other and making recommendations about the effect of laws and policies on the impact economy.
If you’d like to know more about esela and its work, we’d be delighted to hear from you, particularly if your organisation is interested in creating partnerships and collaborating with us.