Social Return on Investment

A Social Return On Investment (SROI) report, commissioned by the City of Parramatta Council and the Western Sydney Local Health District, is a new concept and said to be the first of its kind in Australia.

Image of children and parents at a busy state of the art playground on a sunny weekend

The social return on investment of open green space

The City of Parramatta commissioned a study with the Western Sydney Local Health District in an Australia-first research to determine the social return on investment of parks and sports grounds. 

The Social Return On Investment (SROI) report finds $10 of value for every $1 spent on parks and sports grounds.

In layman's terms: for every dollar invested in green social infrastructure, $10 of social and economic benefit is gained. 

The study included in its sample:

  • Reserves in Winston Hills and Parramatta 
  • Parks in Parramatta, Epping and Carlingford 

When applied to the City’s 33 sports grounds and 124 local and district parks, an almost $37 million dollar investment at 2018 has produced almost $367 million dollars in social and economic benefit. 

two cyclists are shown crossing a bridge over the Parramatta River into Parramatta Park. To illustrate the effect of speed the 1st cyclist has been blurred.

Social value of open green space for the community

The City’s parks and sports grounds produce significant social value, including:

  • Enhanced social connections
  • Community pride
  • A sense of belonging
  • Improved emotional wellbeing

Access to quality green open space is known for its physical and mental health and wellbeing benefits.  

Through safe green open spaces that foster active play, children can experience physical, cognitive and other social benefits.

When communities have a place for activity and opportunities to interact, open green space improves social connections that help develop vibrant communities.