Dr Holly Collison

Lecturer, Institute for Sport Business

Dr Holly Collison is an anthropologist in the field of Sport for Development and Peace (SDP).

Holly has completed extensive fieldwork in Africa and South East Asia examining post-conflict development interventions and the use of sport. Her research explores youth identity, notions of community, International development, peacebuilding, social inclusion and grassroots perspectives and experiences of SDP. Holly is also a qualified performance netball coach and multi-sports coach and has used these skills in her participatory methodologies in the field.

Academic background

Holly's PhD examined post-conflict urban youth populations in Liberia, West Africa. During her time in Liberia Holly worked with former child soldiers, orphans and displaced young people, she volunteered and participated with NGOs, sports federations and community groups. Her work was published as a monograph entitled 'Youth and Sport for Development: The Seduction of Football in Liberia' (Palgrave, 2016). Prior to her appointment at Loughborough University London, Holly was a Research Associate based at Loughborough's main campus. The 'Sport for a Better World?' ESRC funded project was a social scientific investigation into the SDP sector operating in five international locations: Jamaica, Kosovo, Rwanda, Sri Lanka and Zambia. This project will have a significant global impact having produced policy guidance and recommendations in partnership with the Commonwealth Secretariat. During this time Holly has lectured on topics including: Sport and peace, Sport and International Development, Qualitative Research Methods, Anthropology and Sport, Cultural perspectives of Sport, the Social Construction of Youth and the Symbolic Recreation of Community.

Current research and collaborations

Holly was part of a successful ESRC/DFID research bid and will now participate in an advisory role. This project will examine sport, cultural and educational interventions in Nepal, East Timor and Cape Verde.

Interests and activities

Holly engages regularly with the research activities within Loughborough University and has previously sat on the Research Committee and the Loughborough University Research Staff Association (LURSA).

Holly is a member of the British Sociological Association and the Royal Anthropological Institute.

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