Call for Cases | “Sport Finance” | Special Issue of Case Studies in Sport Management | Ends 2017-04-01

cssmj-dsThe business of sport has changed dramatically over the past decade (Brown et al., 2016). Through periods of economic growth and turmoil, the industry has grown tremendously.  Estimates of its financial size and scope vary, but all can agree that the sport industry is large and continues to grow. The need to understand finance and to be able to apply sound financial management principles to sport has increased as well.  Coursework in sport finance as well as foundational classes in accounting, economics, and finance have become common components of the curriculum for many sport management programs. Given the growth and the increasing complexity of the industry, providing strong instruction in the area of finance is arguably more important than ever in the field of sport management.

Many sport finance courses involve a combination of lecture-based teaching and exercises that allow students to apply financial management concepts and analyze financial reports. We propose that case studies can be utilized instead of or in conjunction with lectures and/or exercises in order to enhance student learning. Given that managers of for-profit, not-for-profit and public sport entities are regularly faced with decisions related to financial management, relevant situations and best practices can be explored in the classroom through the use of applicable case studies. In this approach, once a particular financial concept has been taught (e.g., debt financing), instructors could then utilize data-driven case studies to apply these new skills in a practical and meaningful way. This allows professors to mimic industry settings through the process of having students:

  • Read a narrative of a case situation,
  • Identify the case problem(s),
  • Perform the appropriate financial analyses of data accompanying the case, and
  • Make recommendations or conclusions based on the results of the financial analyses.

The aim of this special issue is to develop a library of teaching case studies appropriate for undergraduate and graduate courses in sport finance that can be used in case study pedagogy.

The scope of this special issue is broad in terms of industry context. We encourage submissions that involve, but are not limited to professional and semiprofessional sports; collegiate athletics; equipment and apparel manufacturers, wholesalers, and retailers; administrative and regulatory athletic associations (e.g., FIFA, IOC, NFL); youth sport, sport facilities and buildings; sport media; sport agencies and consulting services; and local, regional, and national sports commissions and authorities (Li, Hofacre, & Mahony, 2001).

The range of topics for this special issue is also broad and should reflect problems being faced by sport managers in their daily activities that may be addressed through the analysis of financial data. This includes, but is not limited to, analyses involving capital expenditures, debt financing, equity financing, risk tolerance, budgeting, economic factors, forecasting, financial statements, new governmental policy, taxes, valuation, and financial feasibility.

Examples of Cases: We encourage the development of original case studies written about, or in partnership with, sport organizations that rely on the use of quantitative data to inform their decision-making.  Examples may include:

  • The COO of a professional sports team using financial data to improve profitability,
  • An arbitrator hired to settle a dispute related to the financial profitability of a professional sport organization,
  • A new athletic director hired to reduce the athletic department’s reliance on institutional support and increase department generated revenues,
  • A director of community recreation developing capital budgets for a new local sport complex,
  • A consultant hired to determine the feasibility of constructing a new sports arena,
  • An attorney hired to advise a client on the best business structure to use for her new franchise,
  • A sports apparel company analyzing financial data to determine its strengths and weaknesses as compared to market leaders,
  • An intramural director developing pro forma financial statements to determine potential profitability of new programming.

 Notes for Prospective Authors: Submitted case studies should not have been previously published, nor be currently under consideration for publication elsewhere.  All case studies are refereed through a peer review process. A guide for authors and other information for submitting case studies are available on the Author Guidelines page: When prompted, please select ‘Special Issue’ for your manuscript type and note in your cover letter that you would like to have your case study submission considered for the special issue on Sport Finance.

Important Dates: The deadline for submission is April 1, 2017.

Questions/Concerns: Questions or concerns regarding this special issue may be directed to the special issue editors:

Matt Brown
Associate Professor
Sport and Entertainment Management
University of South Carolina

Chris Chard
Associate Professor
Sport Management
Brock University

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