The theoretical rationale underlying this study was that a variety of structural design types exist in amateur sport organizations and that their structural characteristics may be effectively measured, scaled, and compared. Characteristics were defined along three dimensions of organizational structure: specialization, standardization, and centralization. The approach used to identify the structural design types was the creation of an organizational taxonomy. Based on the measurement of 15 structural scales for 59 provincial sport organizations, Ward’s hierarchical fusion algorithm clustering technique was used to partition these data into homogeneous subsets. Analysis revealed 8 structural design types. The results, while providing support for the idea that there is a trend toward a more professional and bureaucratic form for amateur sport organizations, also suggest that it is important to consider the potential variety in the structural design of these organizations.
Lisa M. Kikulis and Trevor Slack are with the Department of Physical Education and Sport Studies at the University of Alberta, Edmonton, Alta. T6G 2H9. Bob Hinings is with the Department of Organizational Analysis at the University of Alberta. Alan Zimmermann is with Sport Canada, Ministry of State for Fitness and Amateur Sport, Ottawa.