EASS 2014

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The EASS 2014 conference took place in Utrecht, The Netherlands. In May 2014 the historical University Hall was the venue of an inspiring gathering of many researchers on the topic of the changing landscapes in sport.

Conference theme

Changing Landscapes in Sport: dynamics, hybridities and resistance

European societies have changed over the last decades and are still changing rapidly under current socio-economic and technical communication developments. These large scale developments influence the daily lives of people, the functioning of organisations and the way environments are shaped. Although people nowadays are less tied to their job, living place, partner and sport career, and may combine former incompatible habits, they often simultaneously hold on to certain traditions and power hierarchies. Herewith, boundaries between social groups are challenged, resisted and reinforced. In this, sport can be regarded as a microcosm with contested developments with respect to social stratifications, institutional configurations and the transmission of social values, norms and ideologies.

Practitioners, coaches, managers and spectators derive different meanings of sport, as a social practice, and of the physical environment that enables, encourages or hinders to participate in sport. The physical environment of sport forms a very diverse landscape, as sport is practiced in a variety of types of places and spaces. From a policy perspective, sport gained relevance as a social practice and contributor to a healthy lifestyle and social regeneration. Sport has become a ‘merit good’ and sport participation therefore is considered to be a social right as is reflected by the adoption of the European ‘Sport for All’ charter. In European countries raising levels of sport participation, especially for groups that appear to lag behind, is one of the basic concerns underlying the policy interest in sport. However, in sport policy the contribution of sport to individuals and society at large is mostly based on taken for granted assumptions. This raises the question as to what extend sport policy and scholarly research are attuned to the changing landscapes in sport.

Multiple perspectives will be used to explore the changing landscapes in the participation in and organisation of sport and physical activity. The congress will pay due attention to changing social, bodily and life course processes, spatial and geographical perspectives and organizational and policy perspectives.

Keynote speakers: 

– Professor Barrie Houlihan (Loughborough University). Click here here for his abstract.

– Professor Cara Aitchison (Vice-Chancellor of the University of St Mark and St John). Click here for her abstract.

– Professor Koen Breedveld (Mulier Institute & Radboud University Nijmegen). Click here for his abstract.

– Professor Mark Gottdiener (University at Buffalo). Click here for his abstract.


Click here to download the abstractbook EASS 2014.


For more information: info@mulierinstituut.nl

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