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An examination of environmental forces driving change and stakeholder responses in a Football Championship Subdivision athletic department


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  • Welty Peachey, Jon
  • Bruening, Jennifer
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    Change is a constant in the sport industry, with numerous forces driving and inhibiting the change process. To add to our conceptual understanding of forces driving and inhibiting change, this qualitative case study investigated environmental forces driving change agent decision making, as well as employee and student-athlete responses to organisational change, in a Division I Football Championship Subdivision athletic department in the U.S. Findings revealed that forces for change included competitive pressures from conference affiliation, economic conditions in a turbulent environment, and alumni, parents and fans. Themes shaping stakeholder responses to change were organisational history and tradition, institutional support and politics, and concerns for legitimacy of the organisation. Stakeholders also had homogenous and heterogeneous responses, based on self-interest, symbolic predispositions and sense of collective identity. A discussion situating the findings in the broader sport context is provided, as well as suggestions for future research and practice.

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    Bibliographic Info

    Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Sport Management Review.

    Volume (Year): 14 (2011)
    Issue (Month): 2 (May)
    Pages: 202-219

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    Handle: RePEc:eee:spomar:v:14:y:2011:i:2:p:202-219

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    Keywords: Organisational change Institutional theory Stakeholder theory Intercollegiate athletics Resistance to change;


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    1. Heffernan, Jackie & O'Brien, Danny, 2010. "Stakeholder influence strategies in bidding for a professional sport franchise license," Sport Management Review, Elsevier, vol. 13(3), pages 255-268, August.
    2. Renae A. Jones & Nerina L. Jimmieson & Andrew Griffiths, 2005. "The Impact of Organizational Culture and Reshaping Capabilities on Change Implementation Success: The Mediating Role of Readiness for Change," Journal of Management Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 42(2), pages 361-386, 03.
    3. Ferkins, Lesley & Shilbury, David, 2010. "Developing board strategic capability in sport organisations: The national-regional governing relationship," Sport Management Review, Elsevier, vol. 13(3), pages 235-254, August.
    4. Skinner, James & Stewart, Bob & Edwards, Allan, 1999. "Amateurism to Professionalism: Modelling Organisational Change in Sporting Organisations," Sport Management Review, Elsevier, vol. 2(2), pages 173-192, November.
    5. Walker, Matthew & Parent, Milena M., 2010. "Toward an integrated framework of corporate social responsibility, responsiveness, and citizenship in sport," Sport Management Review, Elsevier, vol. 13(3), pages 198-213, August.
    6. Parent, Milena M. & Olver, Denise & S├ęguin, Benoit, 2009. "Understanding Leadership in Major Sporting Events: The Case of the 2005 World Aquatics Championships," Sport Management Review, Elsevier, vol. 12(3), pages 167-184, August.
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    Cited by:
    1. Welty Peachey, Jon & Bruening, Jennifer, 2012. "Investigating ambivalence towards organisational change in a Football Championship Subdivision intercollegiate athletic department," Sport Management Review, Elsevier, vol. 15(2), pages 171-186.
    2. Turner, Paul, 2012. "Regulation of professional sport in a changing broadcasting environment: Australian club and sport broadcaster perspectives," Sport Management Review, Elsevier, vol. 15(1), pages 43-59.
    3. Lyras, Alexis & Welty Peachey, Jon, 2011. "Integrating sport-for-development theory and praxis," Sport Management Review, Elsevier, vol. 14(4), pages 311-326.


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