About Us

The Centre for Social Finance Law a legal advice and research centre focussed exclusively on social finance, social enterprise and socially responsible business.

We work with social entrepreneurs, investors and intermediaries to help them establish, finance and operate businesses, investment funds and projects designed to have positive social and environmental impact.

We provide commercial legal services for all forms of social finance, including impact investing, blended finance, philanthropy, ESG and responsible investment, and co-operative and mutual finance.

The Centre is an active participant in the growing network of social impact lawyers, advisers, intermediaries, entrepreneurs and investors. We research and explore law reform opportunities that promote and support sustainable impact.

The Centre is based in Sydney, Australia.


Michael Ryland is the principal and founding director of the Centre for Social Finance Law. 

Michael has over 35 years of broad ranging experience in corporate finance, investment funds and commercial law, including 20 years as a partner at global law firms Ashurst and Herbert Smith Freehills.  He has worked in Australia, Japan and Indonesia, and has spent two years as a full time Commissioner of the Australian Law Reform Commission (ALRC).
Michael has particular experience in the law relating to social investment, working with a range of for-purpose and for-profit clients on social impact projects, both domestic and cross-border.  This has included work on social investment fund structures, social impact bonds and other financial instruments, social infrastructure projects, social and affordable housing, disability services and accommodation, and community initiatives and projects.

Social Impact Network

The network of enterprises and associations pursuing a sustainable and inclusive economy in Australia is growing. Below is a collection of some key contributors to the network suggested for inclusion in your list of impact references.

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