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CSR Europe was founded in 1995 following an appeal by European Commission President Jacques Delors to use company best practices and innovation to address societal challenges and local, European and global level.

CSR Europe is today the lead partner of the European institutions in defining the European CSR agenda and is also a key partner for other stakeholders on CSR and sustainability issues, e.g. through the European Multi-Stakeholder Forum on CSR, and the European Expert Group on the Reporting of Non-Financial Information.

In the context of the EU’s Europe 2020 Strategy, CSR Europe launched the Enterprise 2020 initiative in 2010 which aims to provide the foundation for a better partnership between business and the European institutions, and highlight the contribution that business can make to the EU 2020 goals for building a smart, sustainable and inclusive economy. The 2011 New EU Communication on CSR praised Enterprise 2020 as “an example of business leadership in the field of CSR that is particularly relevant to the EU policy objectives.”

On 29 November 2012, CSR Europe held the first Enterprise 2020 Summit in Brussels, bringing together over 250 high-level business and EU policy representatives from the European Commission, Council and Parliament. The Summit served to see how the European Commission’s Europe 2020 and Enterprise 2020 strategies could be aligned to strengthen business and policy collaboration. It also served to reinforce CSR Europe’s position as the lead partner of the European institutions in defining the CSR agenda for Europe.

CSR Europe is now a thriving example of how a business network can work to facilitate relationship building between CSR practitioners, EU officials, and other stakeholders to drive synergies for businesses to innovate, develop collaborative projects and create EU policy transformation. CSR Europe is currently working with the European Commission on developing the new EU CSR Strategy 2014-2019. More on CSR Europe's concrete proposals can be read here.