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The Effects of the 2018 Commonwealth Games Service Environment on Athlete Satisfaction and Performance: A Transformative Service Research Approach

Eric MacIntosh, Keita Kinoshita, and Popi Sotiriadou

Competing at major sport events represents a significant experience for elite athletes. Research has determined that event services can affect athlete satisfaction, yet little is known about any influence on athlete performances. This study adapted the lens of transformative service research to examine, through survey research, the athletes’ perceptions of the impact that the service environment of the Commonwealth Games 2018 on the Gold Coast in Australia had on their satisfaction and subsequent performance. The results from 430 athlete surveys showed the significant relationships between service environment factors and athlete satisfaction and the indirect effects of the service environment on performance, through satisfaction. Thus, satisfaction acts as a mediator between the service environment and athlete performance. The effects of the service environment on athlete satisfaction and performance highlight the areas for future development across the athletes’ experience, from accommodations to social activities, that managers and event planners can enhance.

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An Analysis of Countries’ Organizational Resources, Capacities, and Resource Configurations in Athletics

Jasper Truyens, Veerle De Bosscher, and Popi Sotiriadou

Research on elite sport policy tends to focus on the policy factors that can influence success. Even though policies drive the management of organizational resources, the organizational capacity of countries in specific sports to allocate resources remains unclear. This paper identifies and evaluates the organizational capacity of five sport systems in athletics (Belgium [separated into Flanders and Wallonia], Canada, Finland, and the Netherlands). Organizational capacity was evaluated using the organizational resources and first-order capabilities framework (Truyens, De Bosscher, Heyndels, & Westerbeek, 2014). Composite indicators and a configuration analysis were used to collect and analyze data from a questionnaire and documents. The participating sport systems demonstrate diverse resource configurations, especially in relation to program centralization, athlete development, and funding prioritization. The findings have implications for high performance managers’ and policy makers’ approach to strategic management and planning for organizational resources in elite sport.

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The Role of Interorganizational Relationships on Elite Athlete Development Processes

Popi Sotiriadou, Jessie Brouwers, Veerle De Bosscher, and Graham Cuskelly

Previous studies acknowledge the importance of sporting organizations’ developing partnerships with clubs for athlete development purposes. However, there are no studies that address the way partnerships influence athlete progression and pathways. This study explores interorganizational relationships (IORs) between a tennis federation and tennis clubs in their efforts to improve player development processes. Document analysis and semistructured interviews with representatives from clubs and the Flemish federation were used. The findings show that the federation and the clubs engaged in IORs to achieve reciprocity and efficiency. The federation anticipated gaining legitimacy and asymmetry, and clubs expected to develop stability. Formal and informal control mechanisms facilitated IOR management. The conceptual model discussed in this study shows the types of IOR motives, management, and control mechanisms that drive and influence the attraction, retention/ transition, and nurturing processes of athlete development.