The Impact Revolution: The Role of Law and Lawyers

esela Annual Conference - 12 April 2019, London

Location: London School of Economics

Date: 12/04/2019


The Impact Revolution: The Role of Law and Lawyers

esela Annual Conference, 12 April 2019

Hosted by the Marshall Institute at the London School of Economics

esela Conference Week 2019: Programme of Events

Three events took place over the course of Thursday 11 and Friday 12 April:

View the locations of all esela April 2019 events on google maps here or view our map of the LSE venues.

Friday 12 April 2019, 8:30am-17:00pm
New Academic Building, London School of Economics

View the Agenda

View the institutions participating the conference

You are invited to join us at the esela Annual Conference on Friday 12 April 2019 at the London School of Economics, hosted by The Marshall Institute.

The conference will explore the Role of Law and Lawyers in the Impact Revolution. A varied agenda will cover international and domestic concerns across four streams: Impact Investing, Profit with Purpose, Systems Change and ‘Spotlight On…’.


Registration from 8.30am. Conference close 5pm.

Order of the day

Registration, opening plenary, two morning panel sessions, two afternoon panel sessions, closing plenary.

Choosing your sessions

Delegates can attend four panels from a choice of sixteen, to be selected on the day of the conference. Each stream includes a 101 session geared towards new entrants to the social impact space. Delegates may attend four panels in one stream, all four 101 sessions or attend sessions across several streams.

To buy your conference ticket, click here

For all the information you need to book your travel and accommodation, can be found here

The conference will be preceded by two events on Thursday 11 April: the esela Academic Gathering hosted by the Marshall Institute at London School Economics (10.30am – 16:30pm) and the esela Conference Welcome Drinks at DLA Piper , 160 Aldersgate Street London EC1A 4HT (18:00 start). Click on the links above to register for either event.

Conference Agenda

08:30 Registration, tea and coffee

08:50 Welcome – Dr Jonathan Roberts, Marshall Institute at the London School of Economics

Opening address – Roberto Randazzo, President of esela and Partner at R&P Legal

PLENARY The Impact Revolution and the Future of the Corporation
Paula Woodman British Council interviews Amit Bhatia CEO of the Global Steering Group for Impact Investment and Professor Colin Mayer British AcademyAcademic Lead of the Future of the Corporation project

A deep dive into the impact revolution being spearheaded by the GSG, and the emerging findings from the British Academy’s ground-breaking research on the changing purpose of business. Where do we go next, and what is the role of legislation and lawyers in the Impact Revolution?


[Impact Investment] Demystifying Social Impact Investing [Impact Investment 101]
Charlotte Benson Big Society Capital
Peter Parker Wrigleys
Stephen Newby Herbert Smith Freehills

Please could somebody explain what “social impact investing” actually means? This session will look at the nature of social impact investing, with particular reference to the UK and the role for lawyers in facilitating investment. It will examine common challenges for investors and investment recipients in the social impact investment space and will include practical examples of the types of strategies involved and legal issues that can arise in a typical social impact investment.

[Profit with Purpose] The SDGs – The Key to the Future of the Corporation?
Charmian Love B Lab UK
Professor Colin Mayer Saïd Business School, British Academy
Bill Clark Drinker Biddle
Mairi Mackay British Council 

Roberto Randazzo R&P Legal, President of esela – The Legal Network for Social Impact

If the SDGs are the closest thing the world has to a strategy, what should future-fit companies do about it? And what part should law and legislation play? Join leading thinkers as they debate these critically important questions, while considering the future of capitalism.

[Systems Change] The Future of Corporate Reporting
Jon Williams PwC
Michael Meehan Natural Capital CoalitionTCR Innovations
Dr Geoff Kendall Future-Fit Business Benchmark
Chris Turner B Lab UK

What should we expect corporates to tell us about the positive and negative impacts of their activities? What does ‘best practice’ mean in a world of limited resources? The panel will explore company reporting across the range of different ‘capitals’ and look at some of the companies leading the way.

[Spotlight On…] Approaches to Impactful Legal Practice in Europe
Alissa Pelatan AMP AVOCAT
Anne Contreras-Muller Arendt & Medernach
Marleen Denef impact advocaten

Hear from legal trailblazers who are developing new ways of catering for the growing impact economy. From new virtual and ‘challenger law firms’ to strategic partnerships between niche law firms and global professional services giants, hear how firms in France, Belgium and Luxembourg are innovating.

11:25 Tea and coffee break


[Impact Investment] Blended Capital Structures
David Dowling Ropes & Gray
Amélie Baudot Global Innovation Fund
Professor Deborah Burand NYU School of Law
Elizabeth Tirone CDC Group
John Simpkins Prisma Health
María Peña Symbiotics Group

Can you have the best of all worlds? This session will examine the issues involved in blending different forms of capital from different institutions – with different risk, return and impact profiles – in impact investing structures. It will look at some specific issues that arise in structuring and negotiating these deals.

[Profit with Purpose] Purposely – How to Embed Purpose [Profit With Purpose 101]
Nick Glicher Thomson Reuters Foundation
Mark Norbury UnLtd
Louise Harman Bates Wells
Gavin Francis Worthstone
Carolina Henriquez-Schmitz Grunin Center for Law and Social Entrepreneurship, NYU School of Law

Purposely is a free digital toolkit to help businesses embed purpose. Find out how the toolkit works and how you can use it in your business or when advising clients, with a real life case study of a profit with purpose business and an international perspective on profit with purpose governance.

[Systems Change] Stimulating Migrant Led Business
Roberto Randazzo  R&P Legal, President of esela – The Legal Network for Social Impact
Giulio Pasi European Commission, Joint Research Centre
Fulvia Farinelli UNCTAD
Vasili Sofiadelis Changemakers Lab

The social enterprise movement has the opportunity to harness the skills and talents of migrants and refugees and to enable them to make an immediately positive economic and social contribution. This session will explore some promising business models and how to support them.

[Spotlight On…] Investing in Frontier Markets
Melissa Manzo AgDevCo
Frances Holliday LeapFrog
Natalie Skacelova European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD)

Tinashe Makoni Sunfunder Inc.

What issues regularly arise when investing in frontier markets? The panellists for this session will share their experiences advising on the legal aspects of frontier market investments, including strategies on how to manage some of the common risks involved.

12:45 Lunch


[Impact Investment] What To Do When Things Go Wrong
Christopher Garner DLA Piper 
Andrew Wallace CDC Group
Florian Kohler Obviam

We all like to plan for the best but what happens when things go wrong? This session will look at the ways in which impact investing deals can go south and what to do when that happens. It will look at some of the hard choices impact investors need advice upon in distressed situations.

[Profit with Purpose] Values Driven Business
Ed Mayo Co-operatives UK
Liz Murphy UK Values Alliance

David Alcock Anthony Collins

Ruth Steinholtz AretéWork

More and more businesses are seeking to be guided by their deepest values, rather than a reductionist reference to the bottom line. Explore how a business can be driven by its values, with examples from practice, and find out about the legal issues business owners and leaders need to think through.

[Systems Change] Social Investment Tax Relief [Systems Change 101]
Melanie Mills Big Society Capital
Katalin Juhász Resonance
Neil Pearson Mills & Reeve

Social investment tax relief (SITR) is a tax relief for investment into qualifying charities and social enterprises. Find out how it works, who is using it and how you might be able to advise a client to make the most of it.

[Spotlight On…] The Future of Impact Management 
Jeremy Nicholls Impact Management Project
Krisztina Tora Global Steering Group for Impact Investment
Richard Kennedy Social Value International
Will Martindale Principles for Responsible Investment (UNPRI)

Aren’t there a million different ways to measure and manage impact? Isn’t a consensus impossible? This session will provide an overview of the Impact Management Project and share some of the work of members of the network, with a focus on the legal frameworks that would support consideration of impact in investing.


[Impact Investment] Impact Metrics and Deal Incentives
Mary Rose Brusewitz Clark Hill
Allen Bromberger Perlman+Perlman 
Jim Clifford Bates Wells

Measuring impact is one thing but how do you embed impact measures in actual deals? In this session, participants will talk through the legal issues and considerations which arise when negotiating legal provisions containing impact metrics of different kinds and will look at example provisions.

[Profit with Purpose] Stakeholder Value – The New Paradigm?
Sponsored by UK Government Department for Digital, Culture, Media & Sport (DCMS)
Anna Swaithes DCMS – Head of Responsible Business, Government Inclusive Economy Unit
Joanne Theodoulou Simply Business 
Mehrdad Baghai Alchemy Growth
Peter Barnett ClientEarth
Raquel Rubim and Ruth Andrade Lush

Increasingly, companies are alert to the ways in which their success and profitability is intrinsically linked to the quality of their relationships with a range of stakeholders. This session will explore whether this wider concept of ‘stakeholder value’ is poised to supplant traditional concepts of ‘shareholder value’ as the guiding principle or paradigm in which companies operate.

[Systems Change] Impact Bonds 
David Hunter Bates Wells
Andreea Anastasiu Government Outcomes Lab (GO Lab), University of Oxford 
Georgia Efremova EU Commission Directorate‑General for Economic and Financial Affairs (DG ECFIN)
Julian Blake Stone King
Stellina Galitopoulou OECD

Impact bonds have caught the public imagination as a new way to marry financial incentives with social outcomes. But how does and should the state go about purchasing social outcomes through its role as a market actor and purchasing body and what does good commissioning look like?

[Spotlight On…] Forging Your Impact Career [Spotlight On… 101]
Sarah Dobson ESELA
Constanza Connolly Beccar Varela
Rebecca Perlman Herbert Smith Freehills
Richard Gerrard AgDev Co
Perry Teicher Orrick

16:05 Closing session

PLENARY Powering the Impact Revolution
Tim West Pioneers Post interviews Pedro Tarak, Co Founder of Sistema B, Julie Wynne, Vice President of esela – The Legal Network for Social Impact and Partner at FRORIEP, and Will Goodhart Chief Executive at CFA UK and Working Group Lead of the Implementation Taskforce.

A discussion of the major trends that promise to power the impact revolution over the next decade, as well as an examination of the critical role of the law and lawyers in mainstreaming impact, drawing together the themes which have come out in discussions over the course of the day.

Closing address – Sarah Dobson, Executive Director of esela – The Legal Network for Social Impact

17:00 Close

Any further updates to the agenda will be added here on the esela event page.


The theme of the esela Annual Conference 2019 is The Impact Revolution: The Role of Law and Lawyers.

Our programme of speakers will bring together perspectives from around the globe. We hope to create space for conversations which are geared towards understanding how legal practice and legal policy can help the social impact movement thrive.

Our hosts – The Marshall Institute, London School of Economics

We are delighted to announce the next esela Annual Conference will be hosted by the Marshall Institute for Philanthropy and Social Entrepreneurship at the London School of Economics, on 12 April 2019.

The Marshall Institute works to improve the impact and effectiveness of private action for public benefit through research, teaching and convening. It informs and coordinates the efforts of citizens, researchers, private sector organisations, and social entrepreneurs who are working to tackle the world’s most pressing challenges. We look forward to debating what role law and lawyers have to play.

Sponsors of the esela Annual Conference 2019

Headline Sponsors: British CouncilBates Wells

Sponsor of Impact Investment stream: CDC

Sponsor of panel session on the topic ‘Stakeholder Value – The New Paradigm?’: Department for Digital, Culture, Media & Sport (DCMS)

Thanks to our Network Partners and Conference Committee

esela is supported by network partners from the world of impact investment, profit with purpose and social enterprise, including Big Society CapitalEVPAGlobal Steering Group for Impact Investment (GSG), the Grunin Center for Law and Social EntrepreneurshipSistemaB and TrustLaw.

We are grateful to our host The Marshall Institute and our Media Partner Pioneers Post.

Thanks to our Conference Committee:
Carolina Henriquez-Schmitz, Grunin Center for Law and Social Entrepreneurship
Charmian Love, Entrepreneur in Residence at Bates Wells
Nicholas Glicher, TrustLaw, Thomson Reuters Foundation
Rebecca Perlman, Herbert Smith Freehills
Tim West, The Fable Bureau, Pioneers Post

ESELA Member Discounts

Discounted prices are available to esela Members. To access this, please view the instructions on the Members’ Area of the esla website.

Click here to find out about membership of esela – The Legal Network for Social Impact.

Group Booking Discounts

Discounted prices are available for group bookings.

Individual (non-lawyer): Group Ticket         £40 reduction per ticket when purchasing a Group Ticket for 3 or more delegates who are not practising lawyers. Tickets must be purchased at the same time for delegates at the same organisation.

Lawyer: Group Ticket         £50 reduction per ticket when purchasing a Group Ticket for 5 or more delegates who are practising lawyers. Tickets must be purchased at the same time for delegates at the same firm/organisation.

To buy your ticket, click here

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