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History of The Football Exchange | Football Exchange

History of The Football Exchange

The School of Sport & Exercise Sciences (SES) and its research arm The Research Institute for Sport & Exercise Sciences (RISES) are located in the new purpose built Tom Reilly Building, at Byrom Street, in Liverpool city centre. The School is part of the university’s Faculty of Science. The building includes offices for academic staff, postgraduate researchers, technical and administrative staff. There are a range of teaching and tutorial rooms, but the majority of space contains state of the art laboratories for teaching and research. More information on The School of Sport & Exercise Sciences can be found here.

The School of Sport & Exercise Sciences is world-renowned for its work in sports science in football. The staff research, educate and consult in football extensively. This work embraces undergraduate programmes, research degree awards, short courses, fundamental and applied research, enterprise and consultancy activity, work-based learning programmes and community projects. The work is carried out by a large group of academic staff. Staff members carry out cutting-edge research in the area of science in football and are considered world leaders in this area. Many of the research projects are carried out in conjunction with top football clubs (e.g., Liverpool, Real Madrid, Manchester United) and governing bodies (e.g., UEFA, FIFA, FA). A large number of postgraduate research students ranging from Masters of Research (MRes) to Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) carry out research projects in football-related areas. LJMU provides the only Bachelor of Science (Honours) Science and Football, which was the first academic programme (1998) in the world specifically dedicated to football. It has an annual recruitment of 30-50 students. These students are required to carry out research projects specifically on football in order to gain their Honours award. The curriculum of this programme is bold and innovative and is led by the research activity of the staff. A number of professionals from the football world undertake this programme due to the applied nature of the course. Work-based learning modules enable students to gain experience within professional football clubs, which has subsequently led to many students being employed full-time at these clubs.

Work within and alongside the football industry has been accelerated by the creation of the Football Exchange. The Football Exchange will house all of the work the university conducts in the area of football. Its creation exemplifies and follows the university’s objectives to research, disseminate, educate, and enterprise, in this case in football. The mission of this organisation is to create bespoke solutions in these areas to suit the needs of their partners and clients in football clubs, governing bodies, commercial enterprises, and community schemes.

LJMU staff members continue to disseminate their knowledge across the football world through books, conferences, articles, invited lectures and workshops. We believe the dissemination of information by these staff generally has been and continues to be instrumental in the acceptance throughout the world of a scientific approach towards the training and preparation of professional players, science-led coach education, youth development strategies, and life-style counselling among others. It has also had an enormous impact in promoting football as a health intervention and as a means of encouraging disaffected members of society back into inner-city communities. LJMU staff members are in turn informed by knowledge transfer from the football environment in order to design their research and education. Many LJMU staff members have previously worked within professional football. LJMU has been and is involved in multiple collaborations with partners in football including many professional clubs, governing bodies, commercial companies and community programmes. For example, LJMU have a satellite centre at Goodison Park, the home stadium of Everton Football Club. This has arisen as part of a formal collaborative partnership between Everton Football Club Company Limited, Everton Foundation and RISES. The satellite centre offers health assessment for the family alongside the subsequent tailoring of community-based interventions that encourage positive lifestyle changes relating to physical activity, exercise and healthy eating in the inner city community population and typically ‘hard-to-reach’ populations. The total amount of research, consultancy and enterprise income from these projects and partnerships is in the region of £3-4 million.