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‘We can do it’: Community, resistance, social solidarity, and long-term volunteering at a sport event


  • Kristiansen, Elsa
  • Skirstad, Berit
  • Parent, Milena M.
  • Waddington, Ivan


Much research on volunteers has focused on who the volunteers are, and what motivates them on an individual level. This study, however, aims to contextualize the long-term commitment found in a whole community of volunteers and to explain this pattern of collective volunteering not in terms of individual motivations but in terms of broader social processes. Data gathered from interviews with volunteers in Vikersund, Norway, and the analysis of local and national press coverage in the years leading up to the 2013 World Cup in Ski flying in Vikersund suggest that long-term volunteering can be understood in terms of (i) a high level of social integration (socialization, institutionalization); (ii) the creation of a collective identity focused around the ski flying hill; and (iii) the maintenance and reinforcement of strong community identity and social solidarity by local resistance to the perceived hostility of outside organizations. This focus on the broader community/social processes has implications for researchers examining sport event volunteers as well as managers of recurring sport events wishing to retain volunteers.

Suggested Citation

  • Kristiansen, Elsa & Skirstad, Berit & Parent, Milena M. & Waddington, Ivan, 2015. "‘We can do it’: Community, resistance, social solidarity, and long-term volunteering at a sport event," Sport Management Review, Elsevier, vol. 18(2), pages 256-267.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:spomar:v:18:y:2015:i:2:p:256-267
    DOI: 10.1016/j.smr.2014.06.002

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Christine Green, B., 2001. "Leveraging Subculture and Identity to Promote Sport Events," Sport Management Review, Elsevier, vol. 4(1), pages 1-19, May.
    2. Costa, Carla A. & Chalip, Laurence & Christine Green, B. & Simes, Caet, 2006. "Reconsidering the Role of Training in Event Volunteers' Satisfaction," Sport Management Review, Elsevier, vol. 9(2), pages 165-182, September.
    3. Hallmann, Kirstin & Breuer, Christoph & Kühnreich, Benedikt, 2013. "Happiness, pride and elite sporting success: What population segments gain most from national athletic achievements?," Sport Management Review, Elsevier, vol. 16(2), pages 226-235.
    4. Pawlowski, Tim & Downward, Paul & Rasciute, Simona, 2014. "Does national pride from international sporting success contribute to well-being? An international investigation," Sport Management Review, Elsevier, vol. 17(2), pages 121-132.
    5. Allen, Justine B. & Shaw, Sally, 2009. ""Everyone rolls up their sleeves and mucks in": Exploring volunteers' motivation and experiences of the motivational climate of a sporting event," Sport Management Review, Elsevier, vol. 12(2), pages 79-90, May.
    6. N/A, 1996. "Events," Psychology and Developing Societies, , vol. 8(2), pages 287-288, September.
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    Cited by:

    1. Yuksel, Mujde & McDonald, Mark A. & Milne, George R. & Darmody, Aron, 2017. "The paradoxical relationship between fantasy football and NFL consumption: Conflict development and consumer coping mechanisms," Sport Management Review, Elsevier, vol. 20(2), pages 198-210.
    2. repec:eee:spomar:v:20:y:2017:i:4:p:325-337 is not listed on IDEAS
    3. repec:gam:jsusta:v:10:y:2018:i:5:p:1400-:d:144189 is not listed on IDEAS
    4. repec:gam:jsusta:v:10:y:2018:i:5:p:1468-:d:145101 is not listed on IDEAS


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