Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Sports and Economic Development: Assumptions and Potential

This piece from Pitch Invasion looks at the relationship between sports and economic development, the off-target assumptions linked with Africa's first World Cup, and the power of good intentions in developing sports-related entrepreneurship.

Of course these organizations do not only care about soccer, nor only about Africa (the International Platform on Sport and Development lists around 200 organizations ranging from the “Afghan Amputee Bicyclists for Rehabilitation And Recreation” to the “Zambian Chess Foundation”). But the global popularity of soccer combined with the unfortunate image of Africa as the continent most in need of “development work” makes for a potent combination. And while the sports and development endeavor is founded on an alluring logic and is full of good intentions, it also turns out to be much more complicated—and interesting—that it first appears.

Soccer for Good? Sports and Development in Concept and in Africa
Pitch Invasion
January 25, 2010