Program impact

AXA XL Ocean Education: Why we care

Oceans are changing faster than at any time in the last 65 million years. Alongside ocean acidification and dramatic declines in Arctic sea-ice and coral reef health, consequences of ocean warming are being observed across the globe. Yet, there is little known about how these environmental changes are impacting marine ecosystems and life, and communities, business, and societies now and in the future.

As part of AXA commitment to sustainability and the environment, this global (re)insurer has supported ocean science research and related education outreach since 2009.

Working in partnership with Encounter Edu, the contribution AXA XL (formerly XL Catlin) has made to oceans' research is being turned into a long-lasting legacy of ocean literate young people.

Resources and reach

Since 2011, four sets of resources have been produced for geography and science: Our Ocean Planet, Frozen Oceans, Coral Oceans, and Submarine STEM. Cumulatively, these have results in the following exciting figures:

8 Million

This is combined with over 1.2 million views of 360VR content.

Live events

Since 2014, AXA XL Ocean Education (formerly XL Catlin) has delivered seven live events from the Arctic and coral reefs. With temperatures ranging from -40C to +40C, the field education teams have answered 16,000 questions from over 800 schools live via video link, racking up an amazing 300 hours of live expedition broadcast. Over 200,000 students have been part of these learning events.

"After the live session, we had a long discussion about water pollution with plastics and we are all going to try our hardest to pick up rubbish especially if we go to the beach."

Louise Stone

Recreation Road Infant School Norwich

Classroom impact

  • 89% of teachers agree that the resources have enhanced their pupils’ understanding of oceans topics and increased their engagement with the subjects
  • 63% of teachers say it has boosted pupil attainment
  • 83% of teachers found that the programme made it easy for them to teach
  • 89% of teachers found that it further developed their teaching

Awards & recognition

Among other awards, Encounter Edu's parent, Digital Explorer, won in 2016 the Geographical Association’s Silver Award for leadership in teaching geography. In 2014, Digital Explorer was recognised as one of the leading 100 Social Tech organisations in the world, listed in the Nominet Trust 100 award for its use of IT to create engaging learning. In 2012, its Frozen Ocean's resource pack was a finalist at the Education Resource Awards for the Best Secondary Resource with ICT.


The work of AXA XL Ocean Education has been featured by NBC's Today Show, Geographical Association Magazine, Times Educational Supplement, Association for Science Educators magazine and numerous educational blogs.

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