University’s Community Plan delivers positive change

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The University has a long-standing commitment to delivering positive change in local communities. This means supporting social impact, sharing knowledge and experience, building close connections, providing services to its community and opening its estate.

Community Plan

The University’s Community Plan 2020-2025 outlines how it will deliver on part of Strategy 2030’s promise of Social and Civic Responsibility.

Social and Civic Responsibility | The University of Edinburgh 

The University is more than halfway through the delivery of its Community Plan and can now share some of the progress that has been made in the last year.

Highlights of 2023

University staff are invited to read, view and share the highlights of what the University has achieved alongside local communities in the Edinburgh City Region for the period from November 2022 to October 2023.  

The University is proud to be, in many instances, leading in areas of civic and social responsibility. Some of the highlights of how the University and local communities are enriching each other are:

  • Unlike most universities, the University of Edinburgh has proactively funded socially positive investments. As we go into 2024, the University has committed almost £8 million to social causes. Simon Community Scotland has used the University’s investment to provide permanent homes for rough sleepers in Edinburgh.  
  • Vet students are giving free care to the pets of people experiencing homelessness. 
  • The University Community Grants scheme has funded 176 local projects, including surf therapy for women. 
  • Communities are using University rooms for free through our Access to Rooms project. 
  • There are also a huge number of examples of student groups and staff who are self-organising to create and deliver projects that have a positive impact in our local areas. For example, student volunteers are providing music lessons for vulnerable children, and staff who deliver accessible, science-based climate change education for local children. 
The University Community Grants scheme has funded 176 local projects, including surf therapy for women

Get involved

As we reflect on the last year, the University’s commitment is unwavering with plans to continue its collaboration with existing community partners and forge new relationships with future friends. Working together, the University can have an even greater impact on Edinburgh’s local and surrounding areas. 

The 32 commitments that the University is working on can be found at the Edinburgh Local website. 

The 32 commitments | The University of Edinburgh 

University staff who would like to talk more about how their area could deliver any of the commitments or how they could be involved in the 2025-30 Plan should get in touch with the Community Team at: