Equality is Everyone’s Job: Dr Stefan Lawrence presents research at online event

15/06/2021 by Sinead Staunton

Dr Stefan Lawrence, Senior Lecturer in Sport and Health at Newman University, has recently presented his latest research at an online event entitled Equality is Everyone’s Job. This research, funded by the Leisure Studies Association, has been carried out in collaboration with academic peers from Leeds Beckett University.

This short event brought together stakeholders from across the football industry, including but not limited to, national governing body officials, equality and diversity professionals, departmental managers from across football and executive and non-executive board members. The rationale for such a project emerged from a recognition that, in very recent times, British South Asian involvement in and experiences of, playing and coaching football is intrinsically linked to, and influenced by, football’s existing governance structures, leadership committees, the policy environment and work cultures. Despite this, very little attention and empirical investigation has been paid to the racialised aspects of managerial, administration and governance cultures in British football.

This research aimed (a) to document the lived experience of British South Asian people working at managerial, administration and governance levels of English football; (b) to identify ‘best practice’ at managerial, administration and governance levels of the game that has led to career progression for British South Asian people and/or opportunities for career progression; (c) to highlight the constraints and barriers affecting the employment and progression of British South Asian people in English football; and (d) to inform the inclusion and diversity agenda across all levels of English football.

Following a presentation from the research team, delegates were invited to share their experiences, and suggest future priorities for further diversifying football’s leadership workforce and organisational cultures. Shortly after the event, the research team will be publishing a full report, which will be shared as a free resource, with and across football and sport, more broadly.

A recording of the research event can be viewed online.