2018 NASSS Annual Conference
Sport Soundtrack: Sport, Music, & Culture

Jon Welty Peachey

University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Decolonizing theory building in sport-for-development and peace
Decolonizing theory building in sport-for-development and peace
Within the sport-for-development and peace (SDP) sector, much of the scholarship over the past two decades has emerged from scholars in the Global North or High Income Countries (HIC) with little representation from indigenous scholars and voices. This is problematic given recent calls for SDP to decolonize in practice, scholarship, and theory to truly embrace local contexts and voices and to enable sustainable missions and programs. Motivated by the possibility of decolonizing SDP theorizing, we conducted a systematic literature review of SDP peer-reviewed journal articles published since 2010 to ascertain from where SDP theorizing is emerging, and how scholars have been engaging with theories which have had their grounding in the SDP space. Our review uncovered five theories and frameworks which have emerged from the SDP sector, with none of them, nor extensions and applications of these theories, being articulated by indigenous scholars. We contest that while the SDP field has proliferated in terms of programs and scholarship, theorizing remains almost exclusively the purview of privileged scholars in HIC countries. During the presentation, we will engage with the causes of, challenges, and consequences of lack of indigenous theorizing in SDP, and propose possible ways forward to rectify this imbalance.