Between 31 October and 12 November, Glasgow will be home to the most important conference in living memory. What is decided at COP26 will shape the future of billions.

At Social Enterprise UK we believe that to get below 1.5 degrees of warming in a way which tackles the climate emergency and social inequalities simultaneously, we have to change how we do business. Social enterprises offer an alternative model to extractive, profit-first businesses and the latest research from our state of the sector survey shows that the majority are committed to embedding tackling the climate crisis into their operations.

This is why a key theme of Social Enterprise Futures will focus on social enterprises and the climate emergency.

We will have three sessions at Futures focused directly on the climate emergency:

Environmental Impact is Social Impact

22 November – 2pm

Speakers: David Lammy MP, Sharlene Gandhi (Courier Media) and Louisa Ziane (Toast Ale)

This session draws on the indivisibility of climate justice, social justice and racial justice. David Lammy MP will join up the dots between these issues, looking at how we cannot tackle the one with taking on the other. The session will look at how we must empower Black and minority leadership on climate issues and develop a better understanding of the racial dimensions of the climate emergency. He’ll be joined by journalist Sharlene Gandhi who will offer her views on why changing how we do business is key to building equitable solutions to effectively address the climate crisis.

We’ll also be joined by Co-founder and COO at Toast Ale, Louisa Ziane who’ll talk about their inspiring story and how Toast takes on both environmental and social issues. A key focus of this session will also be to look in depth at how social enterprises can do more to integrate environmental and social justice issues

Response to COP26, policy positions and what it means for our sector

Speakers – Patrick Harvey MSP, Manda Brookmand and Dr Martin Valenti

23 November – 2pm

By the time of this session COP26 will have finished. We’ll look at the fallout from the conference and the deals that were agreed. We’ll ask if COP26 put the planet on course to a sustainable future or if it was a global cop-out of our collective responsibilities to people and planet. We’ll be joined by co- leader of the Scottish Green Party and Minister for Zero Carbon Buildings, Active Travel & Tenants’ Rights – Patrick Harvey MSP.

Other speakers at this session are Manda Brookmand, Director at social enterprise Permanently Brilliant and Dr Martin Valenti, Director of Net Zero at South of Scotland Enterprise. Another key focus will be looking at how devolved administrations are tackling the crisis.

How can your social enterprise benefit from increasing your environmental impact and how to get there

25 November – 2pm

Speakers – Elaine Brown, Cemal Ezel and Danyal Sattar

The final of our climate sessions is one full of practical tips and advice on how your business can increase its positive environmental impact and what benefits this will bring. You’ll hear from Cemal Ezel, founder of Change Please – the social enterprise coffee company creating jobs for people who are homeless – on how they are reducing their environmental impact whilst increasing their social one. Elaine Brown, CEO at Edinburgh Remakery will bring her years of experience working with Scottish businesses to engage them with circular economy practices and you’ll also hear from Danyal Sattar, CEO at Big Issue Invest on the role of finance in supporting our sector become greener. This session will be followed by facilitated networking for participants to share their top tips and learning.

There is still time for you to get your £20 tickets for Social Enterprise Futures. Running from 8 November to 8 December it is a month of discussion, debate and learning for everyone who believes that changing how we do business is vital to building a fairer, more sustainable world.

To find out more and get your tickets, visit Social Enterprise Futures