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The Politics Of Sports And Culture

Young people playing vollyball.

The participants in this research group represent various academic fields, such as culture, sports and outdoor life. They work cross disciplinary.


What is our research focus?

Someone once said that “there is politics in everything”. That is not to say that all studies of culture, sports and outdoor life will be part of our research area. Our focus is on research that evidently has a political relevance. The focus of our research is the area where the field of production of culture, sports and outdoor life (the cultural field), the field of sales and distribution (the marketing field) and the field of government and management (the political field) overlap. Thus we study culture, sports and outdoor life where these areas more or less directly will have political implications. In addition to contributing to government agencies, the members of this research group also contribute with important insight to the civil society and non-governmental organizations, their own teaching (and that of others) as well as contributing to the scientific community.

These examples of ongoing projects may illustrate our research area:

  • sports facilities and activity patterns in the population
  • doping and anti-doping policies
  • organizing sports and physical exercise
  • gender and sports
  • cultural historic analyses of definitions of the concept of sports and outdoor life
  • the structural and cultural framework for music and cultural activities in schools
  • the distribution of resources in the cultural field and the distribution of cultural goods
  • power, management and control in the fields of culture and sports

 The research group will i) respond to actual calls for funding of relevant projects and ii) initiate projects towards potential external contributors. In addition, the group will iii) contribute to the quality assurance of application procedures.

 

Research disciplines

Central subjects included in the interest sphere of the group are sociology, political science, organizational studies, social geography, economics, history and humanities. More specifically, we want to deal with power and administration, management, organizations and institutions, structural and spatial distribution of resources, historical and economic perspectives on the distribution of cultural goods. Also adjourning fields such as anthropology, ethnography, archaeology, cultural heritage and different fields of art sciences are relevant.

Partners and networks:

Our most important national partners are:

  • Telemark Research Institute,
  • International Research Institute of Stavanger,
  • The Norwegian Institute of Culture (NIKU),
  • The Norwegian School of Sports Sciences,
  • The Arctic University of Norway (UiT),
  • University of Bergen,
  • The Norwegian Business School (BI),
  • The Norwegian Police University College and
  • The University of Oslo.

 

International partners:

Sweden: the University of Linköping, Boraas College, Malmö College, the University of Umeaa

Finland: the University of Jyväskylä 

Denmark: the University of Copenhagen, the University of Aarhus, Copenhagen Business School, the University of Southern Denmark, the Institute of Sports Analyses (Idan)

Tyskland: the University of Tübingen 

United Kingdom: Warwick University, the University of Leeds and Loughborough University

Research projects:

Some examples of ongoing projects:

  • A biography of Terje Haakonsen, the snowboarder (Langseth)
  • Female soccer players on the West Bank (Lippe)
  • Music and culture for children and adolescents (in a school context as well as after school). A work package under the SAMKUL-project The Relational Politics of the Aesthetic (Telemark Research Institute; Bjørnsen, Agder Research Institute, Mangset, TUC)
  • «Landscape» as a thematic hyphen between several large and some smaller projects with partly local approach (Tangen and Kvarv)
  • Art and power (Telemark Research Institute; Stavrum and Mangset)
  • How to solve a problem that is a solution? An analysis of doping in national and international sport (Tangen and Barland)
  • A bundle of PhD-projects, among others on international cultural policies, the impact of Unesco world heritage status, Norway’s foreign cultural activities, and music streaming and cash flow.

Some examples of planned projects:

  1. “The importance of sport facilities for the distribution of physical activity and the promotion of health”. Project application to NordForsk, in cooperation with colleagues in Sweden and Denmark (Bergsgard, Tangen)
  2. “Athletics, sports or outdoor life? A culture historical study of the terms athletics, sports and outdoor life in the 18- and 1900s”. A possible PhD-project or a book (Horgen).