Community Engagement

The EIB Institute was set up within the Bank to promote and support social, cultural and academic initiatives with European stakeholders and the public at large. It is a key pillar of the EIB Group’s community and citizenship engagement.

Supporting Social Entrepreneurship

The EIB Institute helps social entrepreneurs to start up, grow and contribute through their successes to solving societal problems. We support entrepreneurs who aim to generate impact – targeting social, ethical or environmental goals – or seek to create and sustain value. This is typically related to the environment, sustainable development, employment, inclusion, education or health.


Accordingly, for six years we have run a competition, the Social Innovation Tournament, which recognises and supports the best European social entrepreneurs with prizes and mentoring vouchers. In 2017, the winners were: Complex Disease Detector (Sweden), ColorADD (Portugal), The FreeBird Club (Ireland), and Walk With Path (United Kingdom).


Supporting social entrepreneurship is not only about money. The Institute organises a yearly Impact Bootcamp and Investors’ Fair, and has created a mentoring network and launched a social incubator pilot project in Portugal. The Institute also provides training in critical areas for social entrepreneurs’ capacity building, such as fundraising skills and digital marketing.

IRIS to blossom in Portugal

Disaster relief for South America

Employee volunteering event for a serious cause