Call for Papers | Special Issue on ‘Sport in Small Nations’. Guest Editors: Michael Sam and Steven Jackson

International Journal of Sport Policy and Politics
Special Issue on ‘Sport in Small Nations’
Guest Editors: Michael Sam and Steven Jackson

Kirana James, Grenada, James won the 400 metres in London, the nation’s first ever gold medal at an Olympic Games.
Kirana James, Grenada, James won the 400 metres in London, the nation’s first ever gold medal at an Olympic Games.

For small nations such as Grenada, New Zealand and Norway, team performances and medal counts relative to population are increasingly touted as reflecting the most meaningful comparison with sporting superpowers China, the United States, Germany and the UK. But factoring in countries just starting to develop their sport systems like India and Brazil, or ambitious middle powers such as France, Italy and Korea, it is clear that small nations will always face an uphill battle.

To mark the launch of the NZ Centre for Sport Policy and Governance, we invite researchers to contribute to a special issue of IJSPP on the topic of ‘Sport in Small Nations’.

Considering that 60% of the world’s nations have populations of less than 10 million and 48% of nations have less than 5 million inhabitants, this issue asks how far these ‘minnows’ can go in building or sustaining their sport programmes. We therefore seek theoretically informed papers that address the following questions:

  • Does sport play a more significant role in the formation of national identity in smaller nations and if so, what are the potential consequences both positive and negative?
  • What are the strategies, policies and programs put in place by small nations in order to be internationally successful and what effects do these have domestically?
  • How should small nations measure the ‘value’ of sport?
  • Can small nations create or change norms around sport in the face of global pressures? 

In recognising the great variety of economic and political contexts, authors are invited to submit original conceptual and empirical papers, addressing other topics and issues relevant to sport in small nations including (but not limited to):

  • Sport diplomacy
  • Branding the nation through sport mega-events
  • Importing and exporting sporting talent 

In preparing your abstract please ensure that you make clear:

  1. The aim of the paper and why the topic or the approach to the topic is important and what your research adds to the existing literature.
  2. If the paper has an empirical basis then explain the methodology.
  3. Outline your main findings.
  4. What are the conclusions of the research? How does this work add to the body of knowledge on the topic? Are there any practical or theoretical applications from your findings or implications for future research?

Prospective authors are encouraged to contact the guest editors for any enquires they may have in relation to the special issue: or

Abstracts should be submitted to the guest editors by 28th June, 2013.

Following a review of the abstracts by the end of June those invited to submit full papers will be asked to do so by the end of December 2013.

page2image5912 page2image6072 page2image6232 page2image6392

Print Friendly, PDF & Email


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.