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Sport for development and peace snakes and ladders

Andrew Joseph Webb (Université Laval, Québec, Canada)
André Richelieu (ESG UQAM - École des Sciences de la Gestion de l'Université du Québec à Montréal, Montreal, Canada)

Qualitative Market Research

ISSN: 1352-2752

Article publication date: 8 June 2015




The purpose of this paper is to better understand the factors that may improve or hinder the impact of sport for development and peace projects. Sport for development and/or peace (SDP) has been described as an emerging, yet under-theorized research field (Schnitzer et al., 2013). As such, few authors have analyzed the conditions, best practices and processes needed for achieving impact on context through SDP. The purpose of this paper is to address this gap in current knowledge.


A literature review was chosen to analyze the focus and findings of the related body of work.


A conceptual model of the dominant SDP process serves as a framework to identify and analyze concepts that may influence SDP impact on context. Moreover, this conceptual model provides insight about an apparent empirical incongruity between the theoretical and practical impact of this dominant SDP process on the ground.

Practical implications

This paper opens a debate around the process currently deployed by SDP agencies to influence peace and/or development. Specifically, we question if indoctrinating sport-related values into child athletes, who then somehow influence their communities, is the most cost effective process for sport to contribute to development and/or peace.


This paper addresses the paucity of insight about concepts that SDP agencies should implement to impact context. This contribution appears significant in a context of increased competition for funding. As growing number of SDP agencies operating in emerging markets compete for rarifying corporate funding, deploying cost-effective projects for development and peace may provide SDP agencies with a competitive advantage.



The authors would like to acknowledge the support of Dr Yves Gendron and Dr Nizar Souiden for their insight and ideas.


Webb, A.J. and Richelieu, A. (2015), "Sport for development and peace snakes and ladders", Qualitative Market Research, Vol. 18 No. 3, pp. 278-297.



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