Professor James Skinner

Director of the Institute for Sport Business

Professor James Skinner

James joined us from Australia and is passionate about delivering outstanding opportunities for students in the business of sport.

James has conducted key research for national and international governing bodies, as well as professional sporting organisations and the Australian Sports Commission. James is also a visiting Professor at the Russian Olympic University and is a former board member and Director of Football Queensland, Australia.

James has held academic appointments at three Australian universities prior to his role of Institute Director for the Institute for Sport Business and Associate Dean for Tea ching  at Loughborough University London. His teaching interests are Leadership, Sport Business and Research Methods and he has a passion for PhD supervision and research training. His research interests are in four distinct areas:

  1. Organisational Change, Culture and Leadership in Sport,
  2. Doping in Sport,
  3. Sport and Social Capital and,
  4. Research Design and Methods for Sport Business.

Academic background

Before his appointment at Loughborough University London, James was a Professor of Sport Management and Head of the Department of Tourism, Sport and Hotel Management at Griffith Business School, Griffith University, Australia.

James is a Visiting Professor in research methods and Chair of the dissertation panel at the Russian Olympic University and was recently appointed a Visiting Professor at Beijing Sport University in China.

In 2013 he was elected as a Director and Board Member of Football Queensland, a member affiliate of the Football Federation of Australia, responsible for the strategic direction and development of the code in Queensland, Australia. He has been nominated by the Australian Federal government’s Minister for Sport on a number of occasions to be Australia’s representative on the WADA Education Committee.

His appointments have allowed him to establish extensive international networks across the higher education sector with universities in Australia, New Zealand, USA, Canada, Korea, Thailand, Japan, India, China, Germany, France, Russia, Czech Republic, Norway, Denmark and Brazil. He has over 100 academic publications including 9 books, numerous book chapters, journal articles and industry reports. He has published 3 books on research methods, a number of journal articles and is currently Guest Editor of a Special Edition on Research Methodologies for Sport Scholarship.

He has secured research funding of over $1,000,000 and has supervised numerous PhD students. Recognition of his supervision achievements is demonstrated through the Learning and Teaching Citation he received for exemplary research HDR supervision and postgraduate teaching. He has consulted with international governing bodies, professional sporting organisations, major events and government departments and agencies, these include: the International Olympic Committee, World Rugby, World Anti-Doping Agency, London Sport, Australian Sports Commission, Football Federation of Australia.

Current research and collaborations

James is currently involved in two research projects with colleagues. The first is aimed at developing a valid model that will provide an economic estimate (i.e. dollar value) of the broader social benefits associated with the provision of, and participation in, club-based organised community sport in Australian society. The second is examining policy mechanisms and frameworks to apply a uniform approach to athlete regulation and conduct.

He is a Routledge Sport Corruption Book Series Editor and, with colleagues from the University of Minnesota and James Cook University, is a Guest Editor on a Special Edition on Sport Corruption for European Sport Management Quarterly. He latest co-edited book, Research Handbook for Employment Relations in Sport, explores the employment/sports nexus in a more comprehensive manner than has previously been attempted, looking across countries and different sporting codes. In June 2017 his new co-authored book 'Organisational Behaviour in Sport' is to be released.

Current PhD / research supervisions

Current PhD supervision

  • Ms Sophie Peng. The Institutional Change Process in the Chinese Sport Sector
  • Ms Jacky Mueller. Implicit Leadership Theories: A phenomenographic study within a sporting context
  • Mr Daniel Read. Decoupling as a strategy to maintain legitimacy in cross-sector social partnerships: A case study of the World Anti-Doping Agency
  • Ms Laura Bradshaw. It’s not rocket science: a neurophenomenological study into performance evolution and organisational innovation in sports enterprises
  • Shuyang Liu. Football Ecosystem Analysis: A Sustainable Business Model for Chinese Football Industry
  • Mr Peter Sear. Empathy and Leadership: Should we be selecting and nurturing empathetic leaders in sport?
  • Mr Tain Lin. The differences between leadership characteristics within a Asian sport context societies and its implications for leadership practice

PhD supervisions completed between 2014-2016

  • Ben Corbett. Strategic Change in Response to an Environmental Jolt: Rugby Union National Governing Bodies and the Olympic Inclusion of Rugby Sevens
  • Jos De Schepper. The Place and Value of Critical Reflection in Work Integrated Learning for Sport Management Students
  • Lisa Gowthorp. Maximising Olympic Performance: A Framework for Understanding the Australian Sports Commission and National Sporting Organisations Relationship
  • Roslyn Franklin. Discerning the Effects of Commercialization on Female Sponsorship and Participation in Surfing
  • Brooke Reeves. Sport Coaching: Management of the Coaching Environment: A Case Study of AFL Coaches

Masters supervisions 2016

  • Philip Tiekink. How can national Olympic committees optimally meet the needs of different types of sport fans in order to achieve long term fan engagement (Dissertation won: Final Project Impact Award)

Masters supervisions 2015

  • Catherine O’Grady. Facilitating Organisational T

Interests and activities

James is currently a member of the European Sport Management Association and the Sport Industry Judging Panel for Nextgen Leadership BT Sports Awards. James was a former Board Member and Director of Football Queensland and has been a member of committees that have provided reports to government departments and agencies.

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