The special features of sport: A critical revisit

Aaron C.T. Smith, Bob Stewart

Research output: A Conference proceeding or a Chapter in BookChapterpeer-review

17 Citations (Scopus)


Sport has an ambiguous history when viewed from a management perspective. As Stewart and Smith (1999) noted, the management of sport has traditionally been divided between two contrasting philosophical approaches. At one extreme, sport is viewed as a unique cultural institution with a host of special features wherein the reflexive application of standard business practices not only produces poor management decision making, but also erodes its rich history, emotional connections, tribal links, and social relevance. At the other extreme, sport is seen to be nothing more than just another generic business enterprise subject to the usual government regulations, market pressures and customer demands, and is best managed by the application of standard business tools that assist the planning, finance, human resource management and marketing functions. Over time these divisions have been blurred because of sport’s corporatization, and through the emergence of sport management as an academic discipline.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationHandbook of Research on Sport and Business
Place of PublicationUnited Kingdom
PublisherEdward Elgar Publishing
Number of pages22
ISBN (Electronic)9781781005866
ISBN (Print)9781849800051
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2013
Externally publishedYes


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