The Independent European Sport Review: some policy issues and likely outcomes

Andy Smith, Chris Platts

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle (journal)peer-review

3 Citations (Scopus)


Published in May 2006, the Independent European Sport Review was the result of an initiative launched by the then British Sports Minister, Richard Caborn, during the UK presidency of the European Union in 2005. The Review provides a range of recommendations for improving the governance and organization of professional sport, particularly football, in Europe. Although many of the proposed reforms have yet to be introduced, the central object of this essay is to offer some preliminary sociological comments on the policy issues associated with the assumptions informing the Review, as well as the likely outcomes that may come to limit the effectiveness of the proposed reforms if they are implemented in the future. In doing so, it is claimed that many of the claims underlying the Review tend to be driven largely by ideological concerns; many of its numerous objectives are unclear and non-specific; and the failure to identify how the proposed reforms may be monitored and evaluated means that the efficacy of future policy designed to tackle the proposed reforms will be difficult to determine. The essay concludes by examining how the failure to appreciate adequately the centrality of differential power relations and relational impediments to effective policy-making means that the Review may prove to be particularly limited in achieving the desired objectives.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)583-597
JournalSport in Society
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 2008


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