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The Social Enterprise Policy and Practice Conference, Scotland’s largest annual social enterprise event, is on Thursday 26th October 2023. The Conference will take place at the Greyfriars Charteris Centre, Edinburgh, from 12.30pm-5.00pm. This is a hybrid event.

This is a must-attend event for those who want to be part of the discussion and influence Scotland’s social enterprise community. This year’s Social Enterprise Policy and Practice Conference will provide a platform for key decision makers, social enterprises, leaders, social entrepreneurs, public bodies and support organisations to engage in conversations, share expertise and network around empowering positive narratives and fostering collaboration for sustainable social impact in Scotland.

Hosted by Social Enterprise Scotland (SES), this year we evolve the conversation from the 2022 Conference to feature discussions and the latest thinking, policy updates, and practice news from across the country. The primary Conference focus is on the third and final Social Enterprise Action Plan 2024 that supports the ambitious 10 Year Social Enterprise Strategy. This is in the context of emerging policy relating to Community Wealth Building and the move of social enterprise support from the Third Sector Division to the Wellbeing Economy. 

The Conference, which offers a hybrid approach, will feature a range of topics including Fair Work, EDI, Net Zero, and Social Impact with in-person as well as online discussions, live polling, Q&A opportunities and keynote presentations. You can now book your tickets for an afternoon of sector speakers, informative roundtable discussions, and extensive networking opportunities.

Keynote speakerRichard Lochhead MSP, Minister for Small Business, Innovation , Tourism and Trade.

Neil Gray MSP, Cabinet Secretary for Wellbeing Economy, Fair Work and Energy is now unable to attend the Conference due to international ministerial business.


  • Keynote from Richard Lochhead MSP, Minister for Small Business, Innovation, Tourism and Trade.
  • Opportunity to hear the most recent policy updates and information on social enterprise in Scotland.
  • Networking and connecting in person AND online.
  • Contribute to topical discussion relating to social enterprise.
  • Celebrate and showcase our successes (meet and hear from some of the Social Enterprise Awards 2023 Finalists and/or join us for the Awards Ceremony – see below).


Conference Date – Thursday 26th October 2023

Conference Timing – 12.30pm – 17.00pm

Conference LocationGreyfriars Charteris Centre, Edinburgh (limited in-person places are available)

Social Enterprise Scotland Member – £45 exc VAT

Social Enterprise Scotland Supporter Member – £50 exc VAT

Non Member – £75 exc VAT

Online Attendee – free

Conference Agenda – SES will build on the strengths of previous Conferences, previously organised by CEIS, and highly regarded social enterprise movement to catalyse a new way forward at a national, regional, and local level in order to make sure that the voices of social enterprises are recognised and amplified.

Social Media – join in the conversation online by using the hashtag #SocEntScotConf23. Please stay in touch with us on Twitter/XFacebookInstagram and LinkedIn. Share your news, impact and help us build on this conference to support the future social enterprise sector.

Got a question? Email –


UPDATE: In-person ticket waiting list is in operation. Livestreaming tickets now available.

This year’s Conference will take place at the Greyfriars Charteris Centre, Edinburgh on the afternoon of Thursday 26th October ahead of the Social Enterprise Awards Scotland 2023 ceremony at the Scottish Parliament which is from 5.30pm – 7.30pm (prompt). The annual Social Enterprise Awards Scotland 2023, hosted by Beatrice Wishart MSP for Shetland Islands Constituency, celebrate the best of Scotland’s social enterprise sector recognising the innovation, impact, and success of the social enterprise organisations and individuals that are making a big difference in their communities.


Scotland’s largest annual social enterprise event, historically organised by Community Enterprise in Scotland (CEIS), will be hosted and delivered by Social Enterprise Scotland (SES) this year.  

In March 2022, the Scottish Government awarded Social Enterprise Scotland the grant to become the single enhanced intermediary in Scotland with the responsibility to represent and strengthen the social enterprise sector across Scotland. As an independent membership organisation, Social Enterprise Scotland is the go-to place for organisations to collaborate, partner, and connect with social enterprises and thus is perfectly placed to deliver this conference.

Kim Wallace, Deputy CEO at Social Enterprise Scotland, said: “It’s a real privilege for Social Enterprise Scotland to pick up the baton and take on the lead for the Conference which is always one of the highlights of the year in the social enterprise calendar. We look forward to working with CEIS and partners to shape the programme and are excited that the event will lead on to our annual Awards ceremony in the evening at Scottish Parliament.”

Martin Avila, Group CEO at Community Enterprise in Scotland, added: “After the decision was taken to give Social Enterprise Scotland the single intermediary grant, we knew that the right way for the Policy and Practice Conference to be organised was through Social Enterprise Scotland. It has always been the sector’s Conference, the place to discuss what’s happening and what to do about it. Social Enterprise Scotland’s role is to bring the sector together to do just that. That’s why we are proud to be supporting them to bring the Policy and Practice conference together at the end of October. We can’t wait to see you there! “

Since the first event in 2007, the Social Enterprise Policy & Practice Conference has provided a platform to learn about policy updates and to offer space for policy dialogue among practitioners, Scottish Government representatives, and other interested parties. It is a well-established calendar event in social enterprise members’ diaries.


We are excited to present businesses, companies and corporates with the opportunity to sponsor and support this year’s Social Enterprise Policy and Practice Conference 2023. We are grateful to Big Society Capital, Firstport, Highlands and Islands Enterprise, Impact Hub Inverness, Inspiralba, Just Enterprise, Social Enterprise Academy and South of Scotland Enterprise for their support with this year’s Conference. If you are interested in sponsoring the Social Enterprise Policy and Practice Conference please email More sponsors will be announced shortly!