Identifying Sport Management Research Strategies 2

The Australian Sports Commission (ASC) and the Australian Sport Research Network (ASRN) co-hosted a two-day workshop at the Australian Institute of Sport in April 2012.
The workshop sought to identify sport management research strategies and had two explicit objectives:

  1. To seek a consensus on sport industry research strategies in the domain of sport management.
  2. To seek a consensus on how to address sport management research priorities.

Rob Kidston (Senior Analyst, Organisational Development at the ASC) has provided an update on the workshop. I am sharing this information here with Rob’s permission.
The workshop agreed that the first step in positioning future sport management research would be to distil out of the discussions, a small number of major over-arching themes with whole-of-sport and whole-of-system relevance that could provide a coherent focus for future work. These themes were:

  1. The value of sport to community wellbeing.
  2. The drivers of, and the barriers to, sport participation.
  3. Sport governance options to strengthen the delivery of sport.
  4. Options for developing a nationally harmonised dataset aimed at strengthening the delivery of sport. 

Rob adds that the workshop planning team considers that the workshop has made a good start in laying the foundations for stronger sector-wide collaboration in sport management research. He identifies the main achievements of the workshop were to:

  • Recognise the need to strengthen sport management research over time to something approaching benchmarks such as sport science research and the research undertaken by leading peak industry bodies.
  • Recognise the need for on-going, representative, “joined-up”, institutional arrangements capable of providing high quality sport management research leadership.
  • Accept that this representation should include the sport industry, federal and state sport funding authorities and the external research community and could potentially be based on an evolution of existing structures such as, for example, the ASRN.
  • Reach a consensus regarding the four priority areas where position papers are required in order to properly inform consideration of future research priorities.
  • Acknowledge that even if there is agreement on future research priorities, little will be achieved beyond the present output unless there is a willingness to explore all funding options and to contribute resources, in accordance with the principles of equity and reciprocity, in the spirit of genuine partnership.

Participants in the workshop agreed that a follow-up get-together should be held preferably before the end of the year, to consider:

  • The four position papers referred to above and the opportunities they present for further research
  • Funding options for sport management research.

The planning team is meeting in Sydney on 7 June to discuss how to advance this agenda.
A copy of the Workshop Report is available here.


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