Over the past two decades, scholars and practitioners have taken a keen interest in the field of Sport for Development and Peace (SDP). These efforts have largely focused on and debated the merits of sport as a tool for development, diplomacy, and peacebuilding in under-resourced, underdeveloped, and conflict regions. Making sense of the positive contributions that sport can offer to such complex and multi-faceted issues requires understanding the various connections and meanings that individuals and communities ascribe to their sporting experiences. This book offers a unique outlet for research that engages with, rather than makes claims about, individuals and communities around the world. Diverse, contemporary, and thought-provoking examples of qualitative methods in the study of SDP are detailed, along with rich, meaningful, and provocative insights from these studies.
Readers are invited to think critically about the fields of enquiry, philosophical underpinnings, and methodologies utilised, as well as the audiences engaged and topics explored. We hope readers will join us in considering how these chapters can push the SDP field into more rigorous, methodologically innovative, and diverse approaches to research and evaluation, while also engaging with actors who are still often spoken for or about, rather than with. This book was originally published as a special issue of Qualitative Research in Sport, Exercise and Health.
Meredith A. Whitley, PhD is an Assistant Professor and Coordinator of Sport-Based Youth Development at Adelphi University, USA. Her research explores the complex and multi-faceted roles of sport and sport for development programs in the lives of youth from under-resourced communities, along with the interrelated systems impacting youth and community development.
William V. Massey, PhD is an assistant professor in the College of Public Health at Oregon State University, USA. His research focuses on the role of sport, play, and physical activity on various markers of youth development, with a focus on traumatized youth and youth from under-resourced communities.
Simon C. Darnell, PhD is an Assistant Professor in the Faculty of Kinesiology and Physical Education at the University of Toronto, Canada. His research focuses on the relationships between sport, international development and peace building efforts, the development implications of sports mega-events, and the place of social activism in the culture of sport.
Brett Smith, PhD, is Professor and Head of Research within the School of Sport, Exercise and Rehabilitation Sciences at the University of Birmingham, UK. His research focuses on disability and the development of qualitative research. He is co-editor of the Routledge Handbook of Qualitative Research in Sport and Exercise.