Call for Papers | Football presidents: towards a typology of political cultures | Webinar, September 15, 2022. Call ends April 30, 2022

On March7, 2021, Joan Laporta won the Barcelona FC presidential election with 54% of the votes. He was club president also between 2003 and 2010.

In football literature, the topic of football club presidents is relatively unexplored when compared to the amount of work on football supporters, players, journalists and even managers. This absence in the literature contrasts with the centrality of those political agents in the public sphere. To be a Football President has a strong symbolic meaning in some communities. Frequently, the President is perceived by his community almost as a synonym of the institution he rules. In this sense, Christian Bromberger (1995) argues that the success of a president relies on his ability to dialogue with the symbols of local political cultures. Bromberger called this political phenomenon, “style of management”. In its political action, the Football President ends up trying to represent the values ​​of the clubs and their local community.

In Latin American politics, it is common for politicians to start their political careers as Football Presidents. The best-known example is that of Mauricio Macri, who became president of Argentina after being successful as president of Boca Juniors. In Europe, we can also find similar cases of club politicians ascending from football politics to politics itself. In Italy, we can remember the example of A.C Milan, ruled by Silvio Berlusconi. Here, we are referring to those figures as Football Presidents, but the term may vary upon the context where it is applied. In Romania, Gigi Becali is another fine example of what we are saying even if he was never a “president” of Steaua Bucarest, but its owner.

Therefore, we are expecting to receive proposals from different contexts to have an international panorama on different political cultures and its leaderships. Bringing scholars from different contexts, we hope to foster research on football club presidents and their “styles of management”. We also expect a broader understanding of different empirical cases to build a typology of football political cultures.

      • Club (and local) identity styles of management and the football club presidents
      • Gender politics, masculinities and football club presidents
      • Race politics and football club presidents
      • Ethnicity and football club presidents
      • Prosopography and quantitative analysis of the sociocultural background of football club presidents
      • Democracy, elections and football club presidents
      • Populisms and football club presidents
      • The role of football club presidents in football Economics
      • Biographies and memoirs of football club presidents
      • Ultras and fan communities and their relationships with football club presidents


      • Abstract Deadline April 30, 2022
      • Notification of decision: May 5, 2022
      • Webinar: September 15, 2022

Abstract submission

Please send abstracts (300 words) with a short biographical statement to the Webinar conveners, Jean-Michel De Waele (, Cevipol, Université Libre de Bruxelles, and Luiz Guilherme Burlamaqui (, Ludens/ Instituto Federal de Brasília.




Participation in the webinar – both as speaker and listener – is free.

Registration as a listener

The information about registration to webinar will be published after April 30th, 2022.


The preparation of a special issue in Soccer and society planned based on the presentations.


BROMBERGER, Christian. Le Match du Football. Ethnologie d’une passion partisane à Marseille, Naples et Turin. Paris: Editions de La Maison des Sciences de L’Homme, 1995

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