Program Overview

The Social Impact Festival is a unique event experience, completely designed for purpose and unlike anything else.  We hope the following information helps you plan your festival experience.

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Themes of the Festival

We listened, observed, and recorded the insights from the 2016 Festival, which revealed the themes for this year…


“Social justice requires that everyone have a right to a home. In rich countries like the UK, and Australia, there is simply no excuse for anyone to suffer the trauma of homelessness. Homes offer humans a place to be and are critical for living a life of dignity.”

Professor Suzanne Fitzpatrick, Director of Institute for Social Policy, Housing Equalities Research at Heriot-Watt University (UK)


“We need collective action to restore resilient landscapes and build strong local economies for our future generations. It’s critical that we inspire transformation and innovations that are owned by local stakeholders and supported by science.”

Dieter van den Broeck, Science & Education, Commonland (Netherlands)


“Place matters to people. Communities and neighbourhoods have immense impact on the people in them; on their wellbeing, sense of belonging, and chances in life. Places need to work for the people in them, ensuring they have the opportunity to thrive.”

Professor Keith Kintrea, Professor of Urban Studies and Housing at University of Glasgow (UK)

Festival Events

Impact School

Diffusing knowledge to carve a path forward in solving humanity’s greatest challenges.

Join leading academics and industry experts from around the world in Perth for three days of learning, connection, and stimulating dialogue. This is not a typical conference. The diverse range of topics includes homelessness, social housing, co-living, housing design, social impact bonds, B Corporations, native title, fair food, climate change and social impact, urban design, outcomes measurement, cross-sector collaboration, and place-based strategies, just to name a few. The three days will focus on the themes of Home, Land, and Place respectively.

Impact Lab

Seeing and learning together for sustained, deep change.

Complex and wicked problems cannot be solved overnight or with a ‘silver bullet’. Instead, we need an entire eco-system of effective solutions and the time to develop them. Facilitator Katie Stubley will lead participants through a bespoke design process, taking them through a journey of observing, empathising, sense-making, and insight generation. Key data, research, and stories are presented to the invited stakeholders before they engage in this highly participatory experience to address WA’s most pressing challenges. These sessions are just one touch point in a much longer program of work by the Centre for Social Impact UWA’s Impact Lab. The three sessions will focus on the themes of Home, Land, and Place respectively.

Impact Brekkie

Explore the big questions around the kitchen table.

What are the questions keeping you up at night? Can a different perspective help you answer the questions that keep surfacing in your work, life, or community? Join fellow social impact enthusiasts and professionals for deep dialogue on today’s greatest social challenges. Bring your own question to pose to others, or simply come along and share your knowledge and experience with the room. Discover new insights, enjoy a stimulating facilitated discussion, and start the day with a burst of new inspiration and energy. The three sessions will focus on Creating, Demonstrating, and Funding social impact respectively.

Impact Gallery

The Perth CBD becomes a canvas for creative expressions of social impact.

What quirky buildings, innovative businesses, or people do you walk past every day that make a positive impact on our community? We have mapped all the amazing social impact experiences around the Perth CBD and added a few ourselves. You can simply visit one of the ‘exhibits’ of the gallery to observe or interact, or join a guided walking tour.

Social Impact Open House

Take a peek inside the organisations and spaces making a positive impact every day.

Always wanted to check out that interesting organisation or innovative space but never had a reason to? The Social Impact Open House is one day where many organisations and spaces around the Perth metro area open their doors to the general public for tours, Q&A, or simply a quick visit. Ask the questions you’ve always wanted to ask and discover impact happening in all corners of the city.

The Good Market

Guilt-free shopping to change the world.

“Every time you spend money, you’re casting a vote for the kind of world you want” (Anna Lappé). Join WA’s community of change-making businesses and consumers for a fun day out with the whole family. Shop ethical and hear direct from the stall-holders about how their products and services are making a positive impact. Expect beautiful products including homewares, fashion, skin care, jewellery, stationery, books, and more, along with delicious food and fun activities for the kids.

Impact Sparker Events

The Festival fringe: stretching the Social Impact Festival to you.

Positive social impact happens every day, everywhere, and can be sparked by anyone. Through Impact Sparker Events, we are highlighting, supporting, and promoting events run by other organisations and groups wherever they are. From community conversations to pitching events and workshops, Impact Sparker Events offer opportunities for communities all around Australia to be part of the festival.

How to Register

Simply select any event then click ‘Register Now’.


Want to go straight to Impact School registrations?

Head to Eventbrite and select Impact School: Home, Impact School: Land, or Impact School: Place 

You can also see a full list of events hosted by Centre for Social Impact UWA on Eventbrite. More events are still to be announced. Want to receive updates? Register here to receive festival news.


The Social Impact Festival is designed to be as open and accessible as possible, and therefore offered at a low cost to attendees. In many cases, events are free. The organisers are very grateful to the many sponsors and partners who help to make this a reality. However, despite these generous contributions, it is still a challenge to deliver a unique, accessible event with high quality and purposeful design to thousands of people. The Festival team operates in a very lean way to ensure the festival is as positively impactful as it can be with the resources available.

Pay what you feel…

If you value your 2017 festival experience/s more than what you paid, then this is your chance to give a little more.

Pay it forward…

Donations collected here will go towards seed funding for the next festival so you can continue to enjoy these experiences and more in 2018.

Donate Here


Join thousands in Western Australia for the world’s largest festival of social impact and be part of the change you want to see.