Positive Impact Events

Positive Impact is a not for profit education project set up to educate the event industry in sustainability. Not for profit means all the money generated by the project is spent on growing, improving and expanding the project to provide ongoing education on sustainability. Positive Impact began in Manchester in 2004 with the goal of making sustainable events more achievable by providing education and support to event industry suppliers. Since 2004 Positive Impact events have taken place across the UK and have been supported by leading associations and trade press including Meeting Professionals International and Conference and Incentive Travel Magazine.

Company details

The Stables, Paradise Wharf , Manchester , M1 2JN United Kingdom

Locations Served

Business Type:
Event organizer
Industry Type:
Publishing / Media / Marketing
Market Focus:
Internationally (various countries)

What is our Vision?

The creation of a sustainable event industry by 2020.

What does this Vision look like?

Using ISO 20121 and GRI EOSS, the event industry will be able to identify their own issues, implement relevant initiatives, monitor, measure and share their journey towards the best practice targets below.


The following have been active contributors to the shaping of this Vision over the past few years:

  • WRAP
  • Environment Agency
  • Bioregional
  • The Carbon Trust
  • WWF, Sustain
  • Natural England
  • Best Foot Forward

In 2010 an advisory board was created for England’s FIFA World Cup 2018 bid by the environmental sustainability advisor to the bid, Fiona Pelham.

The advisory board worked on identifying what would be necessary for an event in 2018 to be as sustainable as possible and created a list of targets.

Each target was supported by a relevant body who could provide free or low cost information and resource to enable the event sector to work towards this 2020 vision.

Over the last few years, a group of sustainability experts and event industry experts have gathered to discuss how these targets could still be used within the event industry. They have since become the Positive Impact 2020 Vision and Pledge.

What are ISO 20121 and GRI EOSS?

ISO 20121 and the Global Reporting Initiative Event Organizers Sector Supplement (GRI EOSS) are two international frameworks which can be used to work towards the creation of a sustainable event industry.

ISO 20121 is an international standard specifically for the event industry around sustainability, and allows you to address issues that are most relevant to you. It's suitable for all types and sizes of organisations in the event industry. 

GRI EOSS is an international framework for writing a sustainability report. The EOSS part refers to the event-specific section which has additional categories that are especially relevant to the industry. 

What can you do?

1. Take the Positive Impact pledge

We're asking the event industry to pledge, and to take action around a number of areas that relate to sustainability. There are four levels of commitment pledge:

  • To consider
  • To monitor
  • To implement and improve
  • To commit to best practice targets

2. Use the targets and categories from the vision

Consider which of these categories could be relevant to you and how you could use these as guidance to make a difference.

3. Share a Positive Impact 

Our previous campaign to launch Share a Positive Impact in part of a vision asks people in the event industry to share examples of sustainability in action that have inspired them. Use hashtag #shareapositiveimpact on Twitter and Pinterest, or visit www.shareapositiveimpact.com for more information.