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Reflections from the HACT social value conference

Anna Haskins, Senior Analyst at The Good Economy, recently attended HACT and the Northern Housing Consortium’s social value conference.

The Good Economy provides secretariat support for the Sustainability Reporting Standard for Social Housing (SRS) and Anna is responsible for monitoring and engaging with adopters of the SRS to ensure it remains as effective as possible.

Anna spoke at the session “The importance of evidence: moving towards a social value assurance framework” where she discussed how the SRS can contribute to social value. Below are her key thoughts from the session:

  • The SRS sets the foundation for ESG assurance for the social housing sector – providing the criteria against which to assure.
  • There are a variety of motivations behind getting reports assured, driven by both internal and external stakeholders.
  • Evidencing your ESG performance instils confidence in ESG performance for both housing associations themselves and their funders.
  • Confidence in ESG performance and reporting leads to improved decision making, which in turn should enhance social value delivery.
  • There are a growing number of housing providers who are having their social value and ESG reports verified (or a selection of key criteria), and this is only expected to grow.