A lack of ‘sustainability thinking’ is evident at the heart of many of the problems that football faces today; from the huge amounts of money that clubs seem compelled to spend on what are often short-term gains – and the speculation, debt and market-centred ideology that goes with it – to the not unrelated deep disenchantment experienced by many football fans for a game that they still, despite it all, remain determined to love.
Sustainability here is more broadly conceptualised than focusing on environmental issues. It encompasses social and economic sustainability, albeit with a critical eye on the interdependent, often contradictory, relationship between what the United Nations regards as the three ‘pillars’ of sustainability (environmental, social and economic).
Fittingly, this book is the result of an international collaboration between an interdisciplinary network of academics and football industry practitioners, brought together by the Centre for the Study of Football and its Communities (CSFC), based at Manchester Metropolitan University, UK. The critical insights collected here focus not just on football’s problems, but also how clubs, authorities, players and fans in a range of local contexts are positively tackling the challenges of surviving and thriving in the contemporary global game.
This book was originally published as a special issue of Sport & Society.
Introduction: ‘Thinking long and wide’: which communities have a future within the global game?
Chris Porter, Anthony May and Annabel Kiernan
1. One rule for one: the impact of Champions League prize money and Financial Fair Play at the bottom of the European club game
2. Chao Amigos! Hello Thailand: football, migration and sustainability in Thailand
Carolina Brill and Chuenchanok Nin Siriwat
3. Football clubs as symbols of regional identities
4. Football and community empowerment: how FC Sankt Pauli fans organize to influence
5. Easton Cowboys and Cowgirls: anatomy of an alternative sports club
6. Ten years of Supporters Trust ownership at Exeter City AFC: an overview
7. Fighting strategic homophobia in football
8. Sustaining health improvement activities delivered in English professional football clubs using evaluation: a short communication
Andy Pringle, Daniel Parnell, Zoe Rutherford, Jim McKenna, Stephen Zwolinsky and Jackie Hargreaves
9. Football and its communities: the celebration of Manchester United FC’s Ability Suite
Juan Luis Paramio-Salcines, Phil Downs and John Grady
The social, cultural (including media) and political study of sport is an expanding area of scholarship and related research. While this area has been well served by the Sport in the Global Society series, the surge in quality scholarship over the last few years has necessitated the creation of Sport in the Global Society: Contemporary Perspectives. The series will publish the work of leading scholars in fields as diverse as sociology, cultural studies, media studies, gender studies, cultural geography and history, political science and political economy. If the social and cultural study of sport is to receive the scholarly attention and readership it warrants, a cross-disciplinary series dedicated to taking sport beyond the narrow confines of physical education and sport science academic domains is necessary. Sport in the Global Society: Contemporary Perspectives will answer this need.