Explaining the social and economic impact of physical activity and sport is a fundamental part of our Towards an Active Nation strategy.
We want organisations to consider not just how they contribute to the nation’s health or wellbeing, but also to society and the economy as well, both nationally and locally.
The evaluation tools featured in this section are designed to help measure the impact sport and physical activities can have on the population’s health, society and the economy.
Each resource can be used by you as part of your wider case for retaining or securing additional investment in sport and physical activity.
Social and economic value of community sport and physical activity
We commissioned the Sport Industry Research Centre at Sheffield Hallam University to calculate the social impact and the economic importance of sport and physical activity in England.
They found that, when measured against costs of engagement and providing opportunities, for every £1 spent on community sport and physical activity, a return on investment (ROI) of £3.91 was created for individuals and society.
Furthermore, the combined economic and social value (SROI) of taking part in community sport and physical activity in England in 2017/2018 was £85.5 billion.
This new social and economic value of community sport and physical activity data is a significant step forward from the previous SROI model, but it's also highlighted where further work is required to:
- Improve aspects of the community sport evidence base (in particular, better evidence of the individual development benefits of sport and physical activity to enable a more complete valuation of this outcome)
- Develop sport-specific and local area valuations that can support case making for more specific activities and geographies
- Expand this community sport model alongside UK Sport to one that also includes the additional social and economic value of elite and professional sport and major events
- Working with the other home nation sports councils, to better align our evidence and valuation work in respect of the social and economic value of sport and physical activity.
Good principles for calculating social and economic value
When undertaking projects to calculate social and economic value, we recommend partner organisations apply the following principles to build a coherent and persuasive body of evidence.
Outcomes evidence review
In 2017, we commissioned a review of evidence on the contribution of community sport and physical activity to the five outcomes listed in the government's Sporting Future strategy.
These outcomes are physical wellbeing, mental wellbeing, social and community development, economic development and individual development.
The review demonstrates the contribution that sport and physical activity make to the outcomes and identifies intervention characteristics.
We plan to publish an updated review later in 2020.
What is MOVES?
Designed to be used by people within the sport and activity sector, MOVES is a tool that shows you the return on investment of projects, programmes and interventions for the health sector.
How does it work?
MOVES has been developed by us and the University of East Anglia’s Medical School Health Economics Consulting Group.Read more
At the heart of MOVES is an epidemiological engine – the study of the patterns, causes, and effects of health and disease – that contains UK data relating to population, age and gender, and the related disease rates for conditions that could be improved through sport and physical activity.
The tool compares groups that engage in physical activity with the same group as if they hadn’t taken part. It estimates the reduction in risk of seven long-term conditions and hip fracture from increased physical activity. The tool then assigns an economic value to the resulting health improvements created by the physical activity.
Are there different versions of MOVES?
The initial version of the tool was launched in September 2015, with version 2.0 of the tool (published in November 2016) featuring updated data sources and the latest evidence and economic analysis principles.Read more
We recommend that those who’ve downloaded and saved the original version of the tool delete that version and use MOVES 2.0 for all future modelling.
Due to the changes in functionality and the updating of the underlying principles in the tool, the outcomes from MOVES 1.0 and MOVES 2.0 are not comparable.