Despite the acknowledged importance of investigating the link between corporate social responsibility (CSR) and corporate financial performance (CFP) within a single industry, very few studies have examined this relationship in the context of the sport industry. Using charitable giving data as a proxy of CSR, this study investigated if CSR would affect CFP of professional sport teams within the four major U.S. leagues. Although the positive CSR-CFP relationship was hypothesized based on instrumental stakeholder theory, CSR was found to have non-positive effects on CFP. These results are still notable since they may highlight the importance of the connectedness between CSR and team operations and the awareness of CSR activity among stakeholders in leveraging CSR benefits. Overall, through the use of improved methodology, the current study furthers the understanding of the CSR-CFP relationship among the U.S. professional teams.
Yuhei Inoue, Aubrey Kent and Seoki Lee
Mathew Dowling and Jimmy Smith
This investigation examined how Own the Podium (OTP) has contributed to the ongoing development of highperformance sport in Canada. In adopting an institutional work perspective, we contend that OTP’s continuance has not been the sole product of Canada’s success at the Olympic and Paralympic Games or lobbying efforts to secure additional funding. Rather, OTP’s permanence can also be explained as the by-product of the activities and actions of OTP itself and its supporting stakeholders to embed and institutionalize both the organization specifically and high-performance sport more generally in the Canadian sport landscape. In short, OTP’s continued existence can, in part, be explained by ongoing institutional work. To support our contentions, we draw on and analyze documentation that was either produced by, or significant to the development of, OTP. Our analysis identifies a number of OTP-related practices (e.g., tiering, hiring of high-performance advisors, and the creation and support of new high-performance sport programs) that have further institutionalized OTP and the norms, routines, and practices associated with high-performance sport. More broadly, our investigation draws attention to the importance of individual and collective actors in shaping institutional settings in sport.
Lucie Thibault and Jean Harvey
The purpose of this paper is to examine the nature and extent of interorganizational linkages between the partners involved in Canada's sport delivery system. Given the changes in the economic context of the 1990s and the ensuing fiscal restraints exercised by both government and the private sector, amateur sport organizations are in a period of high uncertainty. In order to deal with this uncertainty, links between organizations like governments, nonprofit sport organizations, and private sector organizations need to be established, fostered, and maintained. Organizations need to collaborate with each other in order to fulfill their objectives. Linkages between organizations will assist in the sharing of resources and in the coordination of work-related activities. In the paper, a number of examples of existing links between governments, nonprofit organizations, and private organizations are presented. Based on resource dependency theory, strategies such as contracts, joint ventures, and co-optation for establishing new interorganizational linkages are discussed. As well, related issues such as power struggles, loss of autonomy, asymmetrical relationships, and conflicting loyalties are addressed and discussed. Questions for future research also are proposed.
Kevin Filo, Daniel Funk and Danny O’Brien
Sport events benefiting a charitable cause have emerged as meaningful experiences for participants. These charity sport events may allow event sponsors to shape perceptions of corporate image among event participants. Using the Psychological Continuum Model (PCM) as the theoretical framework, the factors that contribute to participants’ perceptions of event sponsors are examined. The influence of this image of event sponsors on behavioral outcomes among participants is also investigated. A post-event questionnaire was administered to participants in a sport event (N = 672) to investigate the relationships among motives, sponsor image, event attachment, purchase intent, and future participation intent. Results reveal that recreation and charity motives contribute to event attachment, while charity motives and event attachment contribute to sponsor image. Significantly, sponsor image and attachment contribute to purchase intent for event sponsors’ products. Finally, sponsor image does not influence future participation intent, while event attachment does. The results illustrate the discrete roles that sponsor image and attachment play in sport consumption activities. Suggestions are made for the strategic selection and marketing of events by potential sponsors to most effectively leverage event sponsorship opportunities.
Linda S. Koehler
It is proposed that the focus of sport management research be broadened to include those individuals who fill management positions in sport/fitness-related enterprises. A particularly useful approach is that of organizational behavior as it pertains to sport/fitness managers. Drawing from the content of organizational behavior for use in the study presented here, items of measure for job satisfaction include ability utilization, achievement, activity, advancement, authority, company policies/practices, compensation, co-workers, creativity, independence, moral values, recognition, responsibility, security, social service, social status, supervision-human relations, supervision-technical, variety, and working conditions. The corporate fitness managers participating in this study reported their level of general job satisfaction to be an average of 78.67 out of a possible 100 points. The factors shown to be significantly more satisfying than all other factors at the .05 level were social service and moral values. Additionally, although not significantly different from each other, both factors of advancement and compensation were revealed to be significantly more dissatisfying at the .05 level than all other factors.
Jung Woo Lee
This article investigates a sign system in promotional campaigns for the 2 sport/energy-drink brands PowerAde and Monster Energy. More specifically, the paper examines advertising materials published on the British Web sites of the 2 drink brands. The media texts are analyzed using semiotics and critical discourse analysis. In so doing, the author attempts to identify the meaning of sport in different contexts and settings and to interpret ideological connotation embedded in the commercial discourse on sport. The PowerAde advertising presents the meaning of sport as controlled and calculated physical activities associated with high-performance sport. This articulation suggests an idealization of productive individuals, and this appears to be the reification of capitalist ideology through sport. Monster Energy advertising tends to endorse alternative sporting subculture emphasizing the aspects of fun and spectacle, but such endorsement is only validated within the boundaries of consumer culture. The author concludes that advertising involves communication practice through which the meaning of sport with some ideological connotations is continually constructed and disseminated to today’s wider society.
Danny O’Brien and Trevor Slack
The organizational field that constitutes English rugby union has undergone substantial change since 1995. This paper builds on earlier work by O’Brien and Slack (2003a) that established that a shift from an amateur to a professional dominant logic in English rugby union took place between 1995 and 2000. Utilizing ideas about institutional logics, isomorphism, and diffusion, the current paper explores how this shift in logics actually evolved. Data from 43 interviews with key individuals in English rugby union form the main data source for the study. The results show that isomorphic change in accord with a new professional logic diffused throughout the field by way of three distinct diffusion patterns: status driven, bandwagon, and eventually, the social learning of adaptive responses. An initial period of high uncertainty, intense competitive pressures, and sustained financial crises resulted in unrestrained mimesis in the first two seasons of the professional era. However, this gave way in the third season to increased interorganizational linkages, coalition building, and political activity that promoted normative and coercive pressures for a consolidation of the game’s infrastructure and future development.
Danny O'Brien and Trevor Slack
Since 1995, the organizational field that constitutes English rugby union has undergone considerable transformation. Utilizing ideas about changes in actors, changes in exchange processes and interorganizational linkages, changes in the legitimized forms of capital in the field, and changes in regulatory structures, this paper explores the nature of this transformation in English rugby union. Data from 43 interviews with key individuals in the English game form the main data source for the study. The results show that changes in the communities of actors composing the field hastened change in other areas. Powerful new actors with strong ties to business environments brought with them professionally oriented values and a new institutional logic. Having made significant financial investments in the field, these actors collectively took measures to protect their economic interests. These measures took the form of political activity and coalition building, which, ultimately, reconfigured the field's regulatory structure. The new emphasis on economic capital prompted significant shifts in key actors' exchange relationships, in that clubs' strategies and structures were reoriented in order to gain access to this important network resource.
Nico Schulenkorf and Deborah Edwards
Building on the evidence of social impacts generated by sport events, there is a need for research to identify strategies suitable for maximizing event benefits for disparate interest communities. This paper investigates the opportunities and strategic means for sustaining and leveraging social event benefits arising from intercommunity sport events in the ethnically divided Sri Lanka. Following an interpretive mode of inquiry, findings are derived from the analysis of two focus groups and 35 in-depth interviews with Sinhalese, Tamil, Muslim and international event stakeholders. To maximize event benefits, findings suggest that event organizers and host communities focus strategically on children as catalysts for change; increase ethnically mixed team sport activities; provide event-related sociocultural opportunities; combine large-scale events with regular sport-for-development programs; and engage in social, cultural, political and educational event leverage. By implementing these strategies and tactics, intercommunity sport events are likely to contribute to local capacity building and inclusive social change, which can have flow-on effects to the wider community. These findings extend the academic literature on strategic event planning, management and leverage, as they provide a focus on community event leverage for social purposes in a developing world context—an area which has thus far received limited empirical research.
E. Nicole Melton and George B. Cunningham
The purpose of this qualitative analysis was to explore the work experiences of sport employees who are LGBT, and examine how these individuals negotiate their multiple social identities in a sport context. Considering the growing interest in sport, and sport management in particular, it is important for scholars to gain of better understanding of why people choose to work in the sport industry, and understand how employee identity may influence career decisions and subsequent work experiences. Thus, the researchers only interviewed employees who did not fulfill coaching or player roles, as these individuals could potentially work in other industries. Analysis of the data revealed how working in a sport context may present sexual minorities with certain advantages, such as an opportunity to enhance self-esteem and gain social acceptance. When confronted with unjust treatment because of their sexual orientation, employees used coworker social support and social mobility techniques to cope with these negative situations. Although the employees did not always view their sexual orientation as salient to their identity, they had all disclosed their sexual orientation, to varying degrees, to others in the workplace. Finally, though the participants did not engage in social change activities, some of their supportive coworkers attempted to proactively create a more inclusive work environment. Implications of these findings are discussed and practical suggestions are provided.