Ethno-politics and state sport policy

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Eivind Å. Skille
Norwegian School of Sport Sciences


Abstract

This paper investigates how the Sámi Sport Association of Norway (SVL-N), with the support of the Sámi Parliament in Norway, challenged the Norwegian confederation of sport’s (NIF) monopoly to state funding to sport. Through document analysis of correspondence between the Ministry of Culture and the Sámi Parliament, the Sámi sport Association (SVL-N) and the Norwegian confederation of sports, it was revealed how the Ministry of Culture changed its opinion from wanting to keep NIF’s monopoly to willingly support also SVL-N with state subsidies to sport. Applying the theoretical perspective of Bourdieu, it is pointed out how the mode of heterodoxy which is needed to create change in a political and organizational field, such as the Norwegian field of sport policy and organization which has traditionally been based on the relationship between the Ministry of Culture and NIF, was developed. Employing the perspective of Brubaker, it is pointed out how this heterodoxy was achieved by the utilization of ethno-political entrepreneurs such as the president of the Sámi parliament.


Click here to read the article in Scandinavian Sport Studies Forum


 About the Author

EIVIND Å. SKILLE is Professor with the Department of Culture and Society at the Norwegian School of Sport Sciences, Oslo, Norway. Eivind is a sport sociologist and his main research interests are within sport policy, sport organization, and sport participation. Much of his work has focused on the relationship between the state’s sport policy making and the possibilities and constraints for implementation of this policy through the voluntary sport organizations. His latest publications include Idrettslaget – helseprodusent eller trivselsarena? (2012, Oplandske Bokforlag), The Conventions of Sport Clubs: Enabling and Constraining the Implementation of Social Goods Through Sport’ (2011, Sport, Education and Society, 16 (2): 253-265), and ‘Sport for all in Scandinavia: sport policy and participation in Norway, Sweden and Denmark’ (2011, International Journal of Sport Policy and Politics, 3 (3): 327-340).


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