Program Overview

About Buying with Impact

The Buying with Impact (BWI) project focused on developing practises that enable Advanced Education Institutions (AEIs) in Toronto, the Greater Toronto Area, and beyond to procure more goods and services from social enterprises.


MaRSDD worked in partnership with AnchorTO, The University of Toronto, Ryerson University, and social enterprises to study, co-design, and then prototype new approaches to social enterprise procurement with the goal of creating practices that would be impactful.

The BWI project builds on previous work done to develop capacity for social enterprise procurement completed by groups such as Buy Social Canada, AnchorTO, and the B Lab in developing B-Corp Certification. As well this work links to the Investment and Readiness stream of the federal Social Finance Fund and the provincial Procurement and Investment Readiness Fund (PIRF), both of which were created specifically to build social enterprise capacity by enabling people to invest in their businesses.

The resulting Social Enterprise Procurement Playbook  shows universities, colleges, research institutes, and other centres of post-secondary learning a number of ways in which they can make social enterprise procurement integral to their purchasing practices. The information provided in this playbook is based on the tools and insights co-created by AEIs and social enterprises during the BWI project.

Download the full Social Enterprise Procurement Playbook