Swim England

A nation swimming

Independent experts to conduct listening research as part of Heart of Aquatics plan

An award-winning research company is to gather the views of the entire aquatics community as part of Swim England’s pledge to create a better future for everyone in its sports.

Independent experts The Behavioural Architects will conduct the comprehensive listening research, which was first announced by the national governing body in its Heart of Aquatics safeguarding, welfare and culture plan in March.

They are inviting all members of the aquatics community to come forward and share their views and experiences – including current and former club members, parents, coaches, teachers, workforce, club committee members, swim schools, judges, officials and pool owners/operators.

The Behavioural Architects’ team are experts in understanding children and adults’ views and experiences to help create positive change and will be conducting the research entirely independent of Swim England.

The research includes:

  1. A private and anonymous online ‘Listening Space’ accessible to all. You will not be contacted after contributing your views unless you choose to share contact details with the researchers
  2. Pre-arranged interviews, focus groups and online research where you will be in dialogue with researchers and everything you say is confidential. If selected, you would be offered a small financial token to thank and compensate you for your time.

The findings from the listening work will help Swim England take ‘proactive formative action’ to ensure there is a ‘positive culture across its sports and that the highest standards of welfare and safeguarding are in place.

Jane Nickerson, Swim England chief executive, said: “When we launched the Heart of Aquatics, we made a firm commitment to take on board the opinions of the entire aquatics community to enable us to make changes and prove we are a listening and learning organisation.

“The Behavioural Architects will capture an honest and thorough reflection of the culture in aquatics now and previously.

“This listening research will create actionable recommendations for us at Swim England and the aquatics community to implement – and we’re looking forward to seeing the findings from this vitally-important work.”

Safe, inclusive and welcoming experience

The Behavioural Architects have worked with a number of high-profile organisations, including Macmillan Cancer Support, Sport England, The Big Issue and Google.

Rachel Abbott, director at The Behavioural Architects, said: “It’s a privilege to be leading this vital listening programme with the aquatics community.

“At The Behavioural Architects, we are passionate about using our research expertise to understand people’s experiences and inform positive changes. We greatly appreciate every story and view shared, no matter how big or small what you have to say may seem.

“If you need any help to contribute or express your interest in taking part, please don’t hesitate to ask.

“Reflecting Swim England’s mission for its sports, we strive to make participation in this programme a safe, inclusive and welcoming experience.

“We look forward to hearing from and meeting some of you soon.”

Links to take part

The private, secure and anonymous listening survey, where people can write as little or as much as they like, can be accessed by clicking here.

There is also an opportunity to take part in the interviews, focus groups or online research where participants would be in contact with a researcher.

To register your interest and see more details of what’s involved, please click here.

Your information will be submitted to Acumen, an independent market research recruitment agency working with The Behavioural Architects to help identify a representative cross-section of participants to take part in the research.

Acumen also abides by the strict codes of conduct outlined by the Market Research Society. Swim England will not be present at any stage of the research to ensure impartiality and sharing of open and honest views.

We are no longer accepting responses for this phase of insight. Thank you to all those who took part in the interviews, focus groups and online research.