“Activism is welcome as long as it’s peaceful”: athletic administrators’ perspectives on college athlete activism via stakeholder theory

Samuel H. Schmidt, Yannick Kluch, Evan Brody

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

The purpose of this study was to examine athletic department administrators’ perceptions of student-athlete activism via Stakeholder Theory. Since 2012, the United States has witnessed a resurgence of activism within sport, college sport including. While collegiate athletes’ point of views have been studied, college athletic administrators’ (e.g., an Athletic Director) point of view is missing. The researchers interviewed senior level athletic administrators utilizing Stakeholder Theory to identify key stakeholders athletic administrators find salient when a college athlete engages in activism. Results are broken down into sub-themes highlighting stakeholders with power (coaches, communications, campus administrators, and high-level campus leaders), legitimacy (proactive culture of accepted activism, personal investment, and type of activism), and urgency (public protest, real-life events of socio-cultural importance, and the athletes). This study’s importance lies in the practical benefit it provides athletic administrators and other stakeholders surrounding an athletic department as it relates to collegiate athlete activism.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalSport Management Review
DOIs
StateAccepted/In press - 2024

Keywords

  • athlete activism
  • Athletic administration
  • intercollegiate athletics
  • stakeholder theory

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Business and International Management
  • Tourism, Leisure and Hospitality Management
  • Strategy and Management
  • Organizational Behavior and Human Resource Management
  • Management Science and Operations Research
  • Marketing

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