Supporting Social Care Innovation in Wales: User Research Programme


From January to March 2022 Y Lab and People Powered Results at Nesta conducted research with 70 people across social care in Wales. We learnt that:

  1. People want change and think it’s necessary.
  2. But the system creates inequality: not everyone has the same opportunity to innovate in Wales.
  3. They want work done on the system to alleviate pressures and unleash their motivation to deliver better outcomes.

The research aimed to identify ways for Social Care Wales to better support innovation in social care. We designed and delivered it to be sensitive to the complexity of the social care system, apply evidence-based frameworks, and work iteratively with key stakeholders. Even before the project concluded, the user research directly influenced sector ambitions, investment, and actions.

Key project aims were to:

  1. Generate insights into the opportunities and barriers facing innovation in Wales by working with a wide range of people including: policy-makers, frontline staff, advocates, people with lived experience, and those with experience of innovation
  2. Help Social Care Wales identify key stakeholders and develop an action plan to support innovation where needed;
  3. Develop evidence-based personas as a communication tool with the wider public sector.

Our research identified 3 Action Areas for Social Care Wales to support innovation and 6 Challenge Areas – recurring friction points stifling innovation in social care, and 10 Visions for the Future of Social Care. Take a look at the resources below to learn more about our research findings and outputs.

If you prefer you can watch our 50 min presentation for Cardiff University’s 2022 Virtual CPD Summer School. The entire presentation is subtitled in Welsh at 2’50 after the Summer School introductory video.

© 2019 Nesta Nesta is a registered charity in England and Wales 1144091 and Scotland SC042833. Our main address is 58 Victoria Embankment, London, EC4Y 0DS. You can reach us by phone on 020 7438 2500 or drop us a line at [email protected].
All our work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License, unless it says otherwise. We hope you find it useful.