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How to account for changes in the size of Sports Leagues? The Iso Competitive Balance Curves


  • Jean-pascal Gayant

    () (GAINS-TEPP, University of Le Mans, France)

  • Nicolas Le Pape

    () (CREM, University of Caen, France)


In this note, we focus on the measure of Competitive Balance in a sport league when the size of the league varies. We construct a Competitive Balance index defined as the ratio of the actual standard deviation to the maximal standard deviation, the value of the denominator depending on the size of the league. On the basis of this ratio we then construct Iso Competitive Balance curves.

Suggested Citation

  • Jean-pascal Gayant & Nicolas Le Pape, 2012. "How to account for changes in the size of Sports Leagues? The Iso Competitive Balance Curves," Economics Bulletin, AccessEcon, vol. 32(2), pages 1715-1723.
  • Handle: RePEc:ebl:ecbull:eb-12-00181

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Andrew S. Zimbalist, 2002. "Competitive Balance in Sports Leagues: An Introduction," Journal of Sports Economics, , vol. 3(2), pages 111-121, May.
    2. Craig Depken, 1999. "Free-Agency and the Competitiveness of Major League Baseball," Review of Industrial Organization, Springer;The Industrial Organization Society, vol. 14(3), pages 205-217, May.
    3. Simon Rottenberg, 1956. "The Baseball Players' Labor Market," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 64, pages 242-242.
    4. Tim Pawlowski & Christoph Breuer & Arnd Hovemann, 2010. "Top Clubs’ Performance and the Competitive Situation in European Domestic Football Competitions," Journal of Sports Economics, , vol. 11(2), pages 186-202, April.
    5. Stefan Kesenne, 2000. "Revenue Sharing and Competitive Balance in Professional Team Sports," Journal of Sports Economics, , vol. 1(1), pages 56-65, February.
    6. Szymanski, Stefan, 2001. "Income Inequality, Competitive Balance and the Attractiveness of Team Sports: Some Evidence and a Natural Experiment from English Soccer," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 111(469), pages 69-84, February.
    7. Rodney Fort & James Quirk, 1995. "Cross-subsidization, Incentives, and Outcomes in Professional Team Sports Leagues," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 33(3), pages 1265-1299, September.
    8. El-Hodiri, Mohamed & Quirk, James, 1971. "An Economic Model of a Professional Sports League," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 79(6), pages 1302-1319, Nov.-Dec..
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    Cited by:

    1. Nicolas SCELLES, 2016. "Wladimir Andreff (Ed.), Disequilibrium Sports Economics: Competitive Imbalance and Budget Constraints," Journal of Economics and Political Economy, KSP Journals, vol. 3(2), pages 393-410, June.
    2. Nicolas Scelles & Christophe Durand & Liliane Bonnal & Daniel Goyeau & Wladimir Andreff, 2013. "My team is in contention? Nice, I go to the stadium! Competitive intensity in the French football Ligue 1," Economics Bulletin, AccessEcon, vol. 33(3), pages 2365-2378.

    More about this item


    sports economics; competitive balance; iso-competitive balance curves;

    JEL classification:

    • L8 - Industrial Organization - - Industry Studies: Services


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