Call for Papers | “Recovery and Sustainability of the Sport Sector during the COVID-19 Pandemic”, Special Issue of Sustainability | Call ends April 30, 2021

The sport sector has not been immune to the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic. The threat of the virus coupled with the restrictions imposed by governments across the world to mitigate its spread has had adverse consequences for both grassroots sport and elite sport as well as for associated sectors such as tourism and entertainment. The negative effects have been felt by professional sport leagues, major domestic and international sporting events, amateur practice, fitness providers, the manufacturers of sports goods, etc.

In this Special Issue, we invite contributions that examine the impact of COVID-19 on different aspects of the sport sector, illustrate how the sport sector has responded to the pandemic and how recovery can be sustained going forward. Likewise, we welcome studies of how COVID-19 has modified sport habits among the population, and affected the development of sport competitions and sport events, manufacturing and service activities. We also invite submissions that show the contribution of the sport sector in relation to the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals. International comparisons and specific analyses for developing economies are particularly welcome.

The Special Issue relates to themes in:

      • Sport economics, particularly the relationship of amateur engagement with economic growth;
      • Sport participation and sport inequalities;
      • Economic growth and sustainability in sport;
      • Sport’s contribution to the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals;
      • Transparency, democracy and sport;
      • Changes in sport participation and their economic impact;
      • Sport events and COVID-19;
      • Public and private policies for sustainability in sport;
      • The sustainability of professional leagues during and beyond COVID-19;
      • The economic impact of COVID-19 on the sport sector.

Interested contributors are advised to email the guest editors no later than 14 December 2020 to indicate their intention to submit a paper to this special issue along with an abstract of no more than 300 words outlining their proposed submission. The guest editors will invite authors of abstracts that meet the special issue criteria to then submit a full manuscript for review. These manuscripts may have preference for this special issue over manuscripts submitted to the journal without the explicit approval of the guest editors.


      • Sustainability policies and practices in sport
      • Sport economics
      • Sport and economic growth
      • Public and private sport policies
      • Sport and COVID-19
      • Sport promotion
      • Sport management
      • Sport events

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Sustainability is an international peer-reviewed open access semimonthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 1800 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI’s English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Special Issue Guest Editors

Prof. Fernando Lera-Lopez Website1 Website2
Institute for Advanced Research in Business and Economics and Department of Economics, Public University of Navarra, Pamplona, 31006, Spain
Interests: sport economics and sport participation
Dr. Themistocles Kokolakakis Website
Sport Industry Research Centre, Sheffield Hallam University, Sheffield, S1 1WB, UK
Interests: sport participation and contribution to economic growth; economic impact of sport; sport satellite accounts
Prof. Girish Ramchandani Website
Sport Industry Research Centre, Sheffield Hallam University, Sheffield, S1 1WB, UK
Interests: economic and social impacts of major sporting events; performance in elite sport
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