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CEO perspectives on the first twenty-five years of football in the community: challenges, developments and opportunities

CEO perspectives on the first twenty-five years of football in the community: challenges, developments and opportunities

Sanders, Alan, Keech, Marc, Burdsey, Daniel, Maras, Pamela and Moon, Amy ORCID: 0000-0001-5795-3206 (2020) CEO perspectives on the first twenty-five years of football in the community: challenges, developments and opportunities. Managing Sport and Leisure, 26 (1-2). pp. 7-21. ISSN 2375-0472 (Print), 2375-0480 (Online) (doi:https://doi.org/10.1080/23750472.2020.1771198)

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Abstract

Purpose: This paper explores the perceptions of Chief Executive Officers (CEOs) at Football in the Community (FitC) organisations associated with English professional football clubs regarding developments and changes over the 25 years since their inception. Of interest was how the schemes might/might not reflect the original underpinning ethos, aims, and intended outcomes.

Methodology/approach: Ten CEOs participated in interviews designed to explore their perceptions of the challenges, developments, and opportunities in the industry over 25 years.

Findings: Thematic analysis revealed four main issues facing the sector: security and sustainability of delivery and funding; the importance of growth and diversification; engagement with multiple agendas and agencies; “professionalisation” of the workforce; and brand values and awareness. For CEOs, success of their schemes was measured both in terms of financial security of programmes and social impact within the community.

Practical implications: The sustainability of FitC schemes is inextricably linked to the success of organisations, contributing to social policy objectives.

Research contribution: Through the identification of strategic and organisational factors that have underpinned the development and outcomes of FitC, the paper addresses the gap in the literature by considering the perspectives of CEOs.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: community engagement, football in the community, sport for development, social inclusion
Subjects: H Social Sciences > H Social Sciences (General)
Faculty / Department / Research Group: Faculty of Education, Health & Human Sciences
Faculty of Education, Health & Human Sciences > Department of Psychology, Social Work & Counselling
Faculty of Education, Health & Human Sciences > Institute for Lifecourse Development
Faculty of Education, Health & Human Sciences > Institute for Lifecourse Development > Centre for Vulnerable Children and Families
Last Modified: 18 Aug 2021 12:35
Selected for GREAT 2016: None
Selected for GREAT 2017: None
Selected for GREAT 2018: None
Selected for GREAT 2019: None
Selected for REF2021: None
URI: http://gala.gre.ac.uk/id/eprint/28355

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