Economic Contribution of Sport

Economic Contribution of Sport          
Prepared by  Prepared by: Chris Hume and Dr Ralph Richards, Senior Research Consultants, Clearinghouse for Sport, Sport Australia
evaluated by  Evaluation by: Dr Liam Lenten, Senior Lecturer, Department of Economics and Finance, La Trobe University (December 2016)
Reviewed by  Reviewed by network: Australian Sport Information Network (AUSPIN)
Last updated  Last updated: 18 April 2019
Please refer to the Clearinghouse for Sport disclaimer page for
more information concerning this content.

Community Sport Coaching
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The economic contribution of a specific sector in terms of its 'value' is often used by governments to better inform public policy and investment.

All sectors of the economy generally leverage public infrastructure and assets to provide a range of benefits. The aim in many cases is to balance available resources (while reconciling costs, barriers and liabilities) with outcomes that represent best value. This value can be measured as a return on investment.

Sport, as a sector, uses substantial resources (land, labour, capital, infrastructure) but also provides a wide range of benefits to the Australian community and wider economy.

It is important for sporting organisations, and the Australian sport sector more broadly, to understand the potential and actual impact that sport can have on a local, regional, and national economy. Insights such as these can help influence and build a strong case when advocating for recognition, investment and support. 

Key Messages 


Australia's sport sector (including for-profit sport related activities) makes a significant 'per capita' contribution to the Australian economy and accounts for approximately 2% of Gross Domestic Product (GDP).


According to the most recent ABS report, Value of Sport, Australia (2013), the combined value of the sport sector in 2011-12 was $12.8 billion.


A number of Australian sporting organisations (including Surf Life Saving Australia, Equestrian Australia, Golf Australia, Football NSW/FFA, and the Confederation of Australian Motorsport) have produced reports demonstrating their value to the Australian economy.

The measurement of the sport sector’s economic contribution to the broader Australian economy is multi-layered. A dollar value can be estimated from employment, time value of volunteer service, health cost savings (a healthier population), sale of goods, provision of services, infrastructure and facilities, and the organisation and delivery of events. In addition, there is a notional sense of ‘value’ related to personal and community wellbeing and national pride derived from sport participation or perceived affiliation with sport.

  • Intergenerational Review of Australian Sport 2017 (PDF  - 1.6 MB). Boston Consulting Group, for the Australian Sports Commission (2017). This review focused on the overall sports sector, with a particular emphasis on participation in sport and community level sport. While the synergies between participation and high performance sporting outcomes are recognised as being important to any discussion about the value of sport, the primary purpose of this review was a global view of the sport sector. By observing trends related to participation, performance, and consumption of ‘sport’ (i.e. in terms of products and services sports provide). Some key economic conclusions from the report were that: 
    • Sport provides the Australian economy annual combined economic, health and education benefits of $83 billion. [p. 7]
    • Sport creates significant value with at least $7 returned on every dollar expended in the sector. This figure is a combination of: direct economic benefits, the network of volunteers and not-for-profits, avoided health costs, and education benefits. [p. 9]
  • Sport is more than just a fringe player in Australia’s economy. Bob Stewart, Professor in the School of Sport and Exercise Science, Victoria University, The Conversation, (24 January 2017). In strictly statistical terms, the Australian sport and physical recreation sector is a “fringe player” in the national economic game. In 2010, the Australian Bureau of Statistics found that spending on sport accounted for only 1.6% of total household spending. 

For the purposes of this portfolio, all aspects of the horse/dog racing industries have been excluded from the estimated economic impact. It should also be noted that substantial overlaps exist between the sport sector and many other sectors, such as recreation, entertainment, and preventive health services. In particular, the broad definition of ‘sport’ often includes many recreational activities, such as boating, fishing, camping and park usage that may be associated with ‘sport’, but are more generally accepted as part of recreational activity. This portfolio will centre on organised sport (the network of sporting organisations) and its economic contribution, as part of a more inclusive sport sector.

More information about our perception of what is (or is not) sport may be found in the Clearinghouse for Sport topics What is Sport? and Social Sport

Sport in Australia 

The sporting landscape within Australia, and many other countries, consists of both community and elite sport. Government support and investment for sport at all levels comes from National, State/Territory, and local sources. Professional sports leagues (football codes, basketball, etc.), professional sports persons (cyclists, tennis players, golfers, etc.), and elite athletes (primarily from the Olympic sports, but any athlete performing at the highest international level) represent the elite segment.

Elite sport has specific human resource and infrastructure needs that closely link it to other economic sectors; such as science, technology, and medicine. On the other hand, community sport is considered to be everything below elite sport. In general, community sport is dependent upon a not-for-profit organisational structure, with a large volunteer base of persons who contribute their time and expertise. The community sport segment is by far the larger, but both segments of sport (elite and community) have many common commercial links; such as sporting goods, facilities and shared services. The two segments are also connected through the athlete development pathway, as elite sportspeople have their roots in community sport.

More information about the size and scope of sports participation in Australia can be found in the Clearinghouse for Sport topic Sport Participation in Australia.

More information about government funding of Australian sport can be found in the Clearinghouse for Sport topic Participation Grants & Funding for Sport and Recreation.

Note that the contribution of local government is generally omitted from this summary. The major contribution of local government is usually not in the form of direct financial grants. Nevertheless local government has a substantial financial stake in sport by providing the bulk of sports facilities and the ongoing maintenance of those facilities.

Running parallel with government funding to sport, there is also a very large investment from private sources. The sport sector is embedded with commercial activity, entrepreneurship, and opportunities to capitalise upon a large participation base.

  • Collingwood Football Club to launch online lottery. John Stensholt, Australian Financial Review, (2 February 2017). AFL powerhouse Collingwood has announced its own online lottery on Friday, profits from which the club will plough into its welfare and community programs. 
  • Introducing The Forbes SportsMoney Index, The Definitive Money Ranking In Sports. Chris Smith, Forbes, (1 February 2017). For years Forbes has been the ultimate scorekeeper of sports business, tracking everything from the most valuable teams to the highest-earning players, from top agencies to biggest sponsors. But quantifying monetary success doesn't tell the full story.
  • Dallas Cowboys Head The World's 50 Most Valuable Sports Teams Of 2016. Kurt Badenhausen, Forbes, (13 July 2016). NFL franchises make up 27 of the 50 most valuable sports teams in the world, including the Dallas Cowboys, who rank first with a value of $4 billion, up 25%. It is the first time a non-soccer club has reigned as the most valuable team since 2011 (the first year Forbes compiled a top 50 list). Manchester United held the crown in 2011 and 2012 and Real Madrid the last three years. 

The Australian Bureau of Statistics identifies how Australians spend their time and money in a number of reports that are specific to the sport and recreation sector. The participation growth of the sport sector, be it social sport or organised sport, implies that economic growth follows and much of this activity can be estimated and valued.

Over the past two decades, a holistic view of the sector’s contribution to Australia’s economy has emerged. One example, the economic impact of sporting events, with their associated tourism outcomes (overseas and domestic tourists) has been recognised and captured. This helps governments at all levels plan their investment strategies. Events also generate considerable general economic activity in the community. Because sports also generate consumer demand for all manner of goods and services related to, or associated with, participation or spectating, there are many additional economic spin-offs from sport that serve as economic drivers within other sectors of the economy.

  •  Economic Contribution of Sport to Australia Report (PDF  - 718 KB). Frontier Economics, (2009). This report was prepared for the Australian Sports Commission (ASC). It looks at the present economic and social rationale for sport and the contribution of the sector to the Australian community and economy. “Sport in general (including for-profit sport activities) accounted for approximately 2% of Gross Domestic Product”.

In every sector of the economy there are investment inputs, some coming from government, but the majority coming from private enterprise. These inputs help to drive a number of outputs – some of the outputs are easily measurable, such as employment or the production of good and services. Other outputs are recognised, but harder to measure, such as personal well-being and improved health. In the case of health outcomes (one aspect of personal well-being), the economic benefits are both at the micro level (a healthy person will visit the doctor less frequently) and the macro level (a healthier population may reduce government health care costs). Overall, the economic inputs for sport may return more value in terms of direct outputs (employment and consumer spending) and indirect outputs (projected health benefits and social outcomes).

AusPLAY Survey 

The AusPlay Survey (AusPlay) is an independent research project at the population level which measures all types of activities in a consistent and comparable way. Sport Australia (formerly the Australian Sports Commission) will use AusPlay information to fill in the gaps in national sport and physical recreation data following the Australian Bureau of Statistics’ decision in 2014 to cease data collection. 

For the first time in Australia AusPlay will collect adults’ and childrens’ sport and physical recreation participation data is being collected simultaneously, to better understand the relationship between the activity habits of children and parents. AusPlay hopes to deliver more detailed reporting, deliver it faster (i.e. insights from the data can be released just three months after collection), and deliver it more often (i.e. data will be updated every six months). This will enable AusPlay to identify and monitor key trends across the sport and active recreation landscape. Compared to previous data extraction of sport and recreation information from larger Australia Bureau of Statistics social surveys, AusPlay will cover a wider view of sport and recreation topics and allow for deeper and more timely analysis.

More information about AusPlay can be found in the Clearinghouse for Sport under ‘Research’. Reports are available for National results of the survey, and broken-down for State/Territory jurisdictions, as well as by Sport.

Historical Data 

In order to capture the economic impact of the sport sector, the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) compiled data on the number of persons involved and where possible the dollar value associated with their involvement in sport. ABS statistics covered a broad range of topics and described the characteristics of people participating in both organised and non-organised sport, recreation, and physical activity. ABS reports detailing the scope of the sport sector included:

  • Arts And Recreation Services 2014-15, Australian Bureau of Statistics, Catalogue Number 8155.0, (2016). As part of the Economic Activity Survey (EAS), the ABS collects detailed information from a rotating program of industries. For 2014-15 the EAS collected additional information from Australian businesses/organisations classified to the Arts and recreation services Division of the Australian and New Zealand Standard Industrial Classification, 2006 edition (ANZSIC). There were just over 127,000 people employed in the Sports and recreation activities industry at 30 June 2014-15. The largest contributor to employment was Sports and physical recreation activities (88,545 people or 69.7% of total employment), followed by Amusement and other recreation activities (19,851 or 15.6% of total employment) and Horse and dog racing activities (18,679 or 14.7% of total employment). Total income and total expenses both increased by approximately 8% at the subdivision level in 2014-15. Sales and service income increased by 9.3% to $13.9b in 2014-15, with businesses reporting positive impacts from major international sporting events.
  • Value of Sport, Australia 2013, Australian Bureau of Statistics, Catalogue Number 4156.0.55.002 (2013). This publication collates ABS historical data related to the value of sport and physical recreation and focuses on economic outputs during the survey period 2011-12. Key areas include: household expenditure ($8.29 billion); employment (95,590 persons employed in the sector); volunteers (2.3 million persons); spectator attendance at sporting events (7.6 million persons, aged 15 years and older); and industries and products ($1.1 billion for sports equipment, $85.7 million for support services, and $90.1 for grounds and facilities).
  •  Participation in Sport and Physical Recreation, Australia 2013-14, Australian Bureau of Statistics, Catalogue Number 4177.0 (2015). This series defines sport as an organisational construct and physical recreation as an unsupervised or informally-controlled activity. Data is presented for persons involved in organised sport by payment status (i.e. paid or volunteer), but the amount of payment is not identified.
  • Sports and Physical Recreation: A Statistical Overview, Australia 2012, Australian Bureau of Statistics, Catalogue Number 4156.0 (2012). This series takes a broad view of the topic, collecting data relating to participation preference, time spent, household expenditure, facilities used, paid employment, volunteer involvement, and many other variables.
  •  Employment in Sport and Recreation, Australia 2011, Australian Bureau of Statistics, Catalogue Number 4148.0 (2012). This publication presents summary data on selected sport and physical recreation occupations from the 2011 Census of Population and Housing. The occupations included are derived from those that appear in the ABS publication ‘Australian Culture and Leisure Classifications’, Catalogue Number 4902.0.
  •  Involvement in Organised Sport and Physical Activity, Australia 2010, Australian Bureau of Statistics, Catalogue Number 6285.0. This series takes a narrow definition of sport as an activity under the auspices of sporting organisations and provides some information about the characteristics of persons involved in sport and comparisons over time.
  •  Volunteers in Sport, Australia 2010, Australian Bureau of Statistics, Catalogue Number 4440.0.55.001 (2012). This report captures the extent, influence, and characteristics of sport volunteers. It’s reported that 6.1 million Australians preform some type of voluntary work; the sport sector had 2.3 million volunteers and is the largest single volunteer sector.
  • Household expenditure on sports & physical recreation, Australia, 2003-04 (PDF  - 154 KB), Australian Bureau of Statistics, (2004). This report presents results from the Household Expenditure Survey conducted by the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) during 2003ñ04. The survey collected detailed information about the expenditure and income of households resident in private dwellings throughout Australia. The report provides details of the expenditure on sports and physical recreation products during 2003ñ04. It also provides a comparison at constant prices of 2003-04 data with the corresponding figures for expenditure on sports and physical recreation from the 199-99 Household Expenditure Survey.
  • Household expenditure on sports & physical recreation, Australia, 1998-99 (PDF  - 308 KB), Australian Bureau of Statistics, (2003). This report presents results from the Household Expenditure Survey conducted by the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) during 1998–99. The survey collected detailed information about the expenditure and income of households resident in private dwellings throughout Australia. The report provides details of the expenditure, by various categories of households, on sports and physical recreation products and also on other leisure products during 1998–99. It also provides a summary comparison at constant prices of 1998–99 data with the equivalent figures for expenditure on sports, physical recreation and other leisure products from the 1993–94 Household Expenditure Survey.

A tool to measure....

  • Event Impacts. The eventIMPACTS ToolKit is intended to provide organisers and supporters of public events with some key guidance and good practice principles for evaluating the economic, social, environmental and media related impacts associated with their event. eventIMPACTS is the result of a collaboration between the Department for Culture, Media and Sport, Discover Northern Ireland, EventScotland, London & Partners, UK Sport, and the Welsh Government. 

Australia’s economy

The combined value of the sport sector, according to the ABS report, Value of Sport, Australia, 2013 was $12.8 billion during the 2011-12 fiscal year. However, this report included the contribution of several categories that are more appropriately considered ‘recreation’ activities, such as camping and recreational boating; and did not include the service industries related to the sport sector. In addition, the ABS data does not address the full value of sport sector employment because it only looks at primary employment; there is a substantial economic contribution from the volunteer workforce which is not factored into this total. Also, the workforce estimate only includes individuals whose main occupation at the time of the census was in the sport and recreation sector. Empirical evidence would suggest that a large part-time paid workforce, where the individual’s primary source of income is not sport, also exists.

  • Sport in Australia, (PDF  - 340 KB), Ruthven P, IBIS World, published in Business Review Weekly, (July 2014). During the fiscal year 2014-15, the nation’s sporting industry is expected to generate combined revenue of some $27 billion. This estimate includes a more comprehensive view of the sport sector.

Frontier Economics' (PDF  - 718 KB) estimate of the sport sector’s economic contribution at 2% of Gross Domestic Product (GDP) in Australia is consistent with other international reports.

  • White Paper on Sport, (PDF  - 86 KB), Commission of the European Communities (2007). This paper suggests that sport in its’ broader sense, generated €407 billion  to the EU economy in 2004, accounting for approximately 3.7% of GDP. Note that a broad definition of the sport sector underpinned this estimate. This white paper recommends that the contribution of sport should be made more visible and promoted in various EU policies (i.e. health, social issues, education, tourism, etc.).
  •  Study on the contribution of sport to economic growth and employment in the EU, (PDF  - 4.8 MB), European Commission, Directorate-General Education and Culture, Final Report (November 2012). This study looked at the contribution of sport to economic growth and employment in the European Union during 2011-2012, based on data collection in 27 EU Member States. The share of what is generally known as the organised sports sector (sports clubs, public sports venues, sports event organisers; combined with its multiplier both indirect and induced) effects, add up to 2.98% of overall gross value added in the European Union, €294.36 billion Euros.

The accepted definition of ‘sport’ and its association with other industry sectors often confounds the estimates. The invasive nature of sport in our lifestyle and culture is difficult to capture with a single economic measure, as observed by Frontier Economics:

Substantial economic resources (land, labour, capital) are devoted to facilitating sporting activities in Australia. The conventional economic approach would define the gross value of this use of society’s resources as the aggregate value that members of society place on the goods and services that are produced. However, even if we could measure this, it would not provide an appropriate measure of the economic contribution of the sport sector. A more appropriate measure of the economic contribution of the sport sector is the net value of the use of society’s resources by the sector, i.e. aggregate value that members of society place on the goods and services produced by the sector less the aggregate value that they would place on the goods and services produced by the best alternative use of the resources.Frontier Economics, p.3

As well as the direct economic value attributed to sport, ABS Director Andrew Middleton states:

...that in addition to providing significant health and social benefits, sport and physical recreation has considerable economic importance, which is reflected in the latest household expenditure, production and international trade data.Andrew Middleton

The 2017 BCG Intergenerational Review of Australian Sport (PDF  - 1.6 MB) also highlighted this:

Together, sport creates significant value for Australia, with at least $7 returned on every dollar expended in the sector. This high rate of return is a combination economic benefits, the network of volunteers and not-for-profits, avoided health costs, and education benefits. Intergenerational Review of Australian Sport 2017, p.9

Therefore, we can confidently conclude that the economic contribution of the sport sector is both direct and indirect when all factors are taken into consideration.

Examples of economic snapshots from the Australian sport sector include:

  • Equestrian brings more than $1Billion to the Economy, Equestrian Australia, (February 2017).  In October, 2016, Equestrian Australia (EA) commissioned Sports Business Partners and Street Ryan to conduct a community impact study on Equestrian sport in Australia. It’s the first report of its kind ever commissioned by EA, in partnership with all state branches, and is a significant investment towards better understanding our sport, its stakeholders and the potential for future growth and development. The main objective of this project was to determine the contribution of Equestrian to the broader community within Australia. The focus was to understand the community contribution generated across three key areas: Economic, Social, and Health. 
    • The total economic contribution of Equestrian (excluding all codes of horse racing, polo/polocrosse, rodeo, western & tent pegging) is over $1.143 Billion.
  • Surf Life Saving’s economic contribution to the community valued at $3.6 billionPrice Waterhouse Coopers, (2011). The report, What is the economic contribution of Surf Life Saving in Australia, stated that for every $1 invested by government, sponsors and the community into Surf Life Saving’s drowning and injury prevention services, the community benefit was $29.
  • ICC Cricket World Cup Demontrates Value of Big Event (PDF  - 340 KB). Tourism Australia, media release, (30 June 2015). According to Tourism Australia the findings of a report analysing the economic impact and benefits of the 2015 ICC Cricket World Cup demonstrate the value and importance of Australian tourism backing large scale events. The tourism benefits of the tournament to Australia included:
    • 770,000 in total attendance at the Australian matches;
    • 370,000 visitors, including 100,000 from overseas;
    • $325m in international visitor spending;
    • 1.5m bed nights, including 815,000 for international visitors.
  • Cricket World Cup 2015 Ltd: economic impact and benefit analysis of the ICC Cricket World Cup 2015, (PDF  - 3.1 MB). PricewaterhouseCoopers, Final Report (2015). The ICC CWC 2015 was hailed by the ICC Chairman as the ‘most popular Cricket World Cup in history’, based on a combination of attendance, television audience, and, perhaps most significantly, digital media. The widespread reach of the Tournament across much of the globe, including many non-cricketing nations, was one of the main contributors to its overwhelming success. This report found that the tournament provided a significant economic boost for co-hosts Australia and New Zealand, generating more than AU$1.1 billion in direct spending and creating the equivalent of 8,320 full-time jobs.
  • Victoria’s Outdoor Economy Worth $6.2 Billion, Outdoors Victoria, (30 March 2016). New independent economic modelling released today shows that nature-based outdoor activities add $6.2 billion per year to Victoria’s economy, supporting 71,000 jobs, or 2% of Victoria’s total workforce. These activities include nature-based tourism, camps, and outdoor education, and a full range of outdoor recreational activities, such as fishing, four-wheel driving, bushwalking, canoeing, birdwatching, beach activities, and many others. The analysis, commissioned by Sport and Recreation Victoria and Outdoors Victoria, is the first of its kind for Victoria. The report’s authors, Marsden Jacob Associates, note Victoria’s nature based outdoors sector makes a significant contribution to our economy and to individual wellbeing in Victoria.
  • The Community Impact of Football in NSW, (PDF  - 1.0 MB), Football Federation Australia and Football NSW (2015). The report’s authors, strategy and research consultancy SBP and economic and demographic analysts Street Ryan, estimate the total annual economic contribution of grassroots football in NSW is more than $417 million per annum. This figure has been modelled on the estimated expenditure of football’s peak organisations (associations and clubs) and participant members for retail items (clothing and equipment), employment, events, canteen sales, travel costs and grounds costs. The health benefit to governments is estimated to be $4.5 million per annum, based upon a participant base of 280,000 persons.
  • The Australian Golf Industry Economic Report 2010, (PDF  - 1.4 MB), Australian Golf Industry Council (2010). It is estimated that the golf industry contributed $2.94 billion to the Australian economy in 2008. This estimate comprised of $2.31 billion in direct industries and $0.63 billion in associated industries.
  • Economic Impact of Motor Sport, Confederation of Australian Motor Sports (CAMS) (2013). A study by Ernst & Young highlights the importance of the motor sport industry to Australia. In 2013 Australian motor sport generated $2.7 billion in direct industry output, $1.2 billion in direct value add, and over 16,000 direct jobs.
  • Value of a Community Football Club, (PDF  - 4.5 MB), Centre for Sport and Social Impact, La Trobe University (2014). The social return on investment for an average Australian Rules Football community club is estimated to be $4.40 return for every $1 spent to run a club. The value of community football clubs in Victoria is indirectly measured in terms of increased social connectedness, community wellbeing, and personal mental and physical wellbeing of participants. There are also social outcomes, such as civic pride in the community.
  • Understanding Cycle Tourism Experiences at the Tour Down Under, Richard Shipway, Katherine King, Insun Sunny Lee & Graham Brown, Journal of Sport and Tourism, (7 March 2016). Sport tourism experiences are subjective and emotional, laden with symbolic meaning. This study explores the experiences of participants who adopted the multiple roles of both an active participant and event spectator, within the parameters of one chosen sporting event. A professional cycling race event, the Tour Down Under in South Australia was chosen for this investigation, and 20 face-to-face individual interviews were conducted with cycle tourists.
  • Value of Community Sport Infrastructure (PDF  - 5.3 MB), KPMG for the Australian Sports Commission, (2018). The Australian Sports Commission partnered with KPMG and La Trobe University to investigate the value of community sport infrastructure to Australia – including the value of economic, social and health benefits associated with such facilities. The report estimated that community sport infrastructure generates an annual value of more than AU$16.2billion to Australia, with AU$6.3 billion worth of economic benefit, AU$4.9 billion worth of health benefit, and AU$5.1 billion worth of social benefit. 

The government of the United Kingdom has extended its economic analysis of the sport sector to estimate a per-person value of the sport sector that includes the ‘soft’ statistical measure of wellbeing.

  •  Quantifying and valuing the wellbeing impacts of culture and sport, (PDF  - 933 KB), Fujiwara D, Kudrna L and Dolan P, Department for Culture, Media and Sport, United Kingdom (2014). The Department commissioned researchers from the London School of Economics to undertake analysis and develop the evidence base on the wellbeing impacts of both cultural engagement and sport participation. This research also attempts to estimate the monetary value to the government of those wellbeing impacts, particularly in terms of current investment and long-term benefit. Sport participation was found to be associated with ‘wellbeing’ and this was valued at £1,127 per person per year. Sport participation interacts with a number of social indicators of wellbeing; such as education, health, and social cohesion. The economic impact of sport was thus many times the direct government investment on a per capita basis.


The 2016 Census reported that approximately 88,827 people had their main employment in sport or recreation (including sporting and recreational product manufacturing, wholesaling, and retailing, but excluding horse and dog racing, gambling, or other amusement and recreational activities). Women made up approximately 45% of the total sport & recreation workforce with men representing 55%.

The 2016/17 ABS Australian Industry Report shows that around 132,000 people were employed in the sport and recreation sector; however, it does not provide any further detailed breakdown. Thesport sector workforce would include a wide variety of professions including coaches, officials, sports science/sports medicine, and administrators. Individuals could work for government, primarily at State or Federal level, commercial, or not-for-profit sporting organisations, in facility management, or related industries. 

Service Skills Australia has looked at the sport sector and assessed it as a diverse set of business and organisation types. Typically, the community sport sector is made up of a large number of not-for-profit organisations that rely upon volunteer labour. However, there are also many sport related business entities that operate commercially, and these vary greatly in size. Within the government employment sector there are sport related employment opportunities at all levels – National, State/Territory, and local.

  • Sport, 2014 Environmental Scan, (PDF  - 750 KB), Service Skills Australia (2014). The ‘Environmental Scans’ series covers the latest industry intelligence, workforce development needs, and population statistics. Service Skills Australia produces a number of reports on kindred sectors, such as sport, fitness, community recreation and outdoor recreation. Coaching and officiating have shown the greatest rate of employment growth during the period 2006 to 2011.

More information about the role of coaches and officials in community sport can be found in the Clearinghouse for Sport topics, Community Sport Coaching and Community Sport Officiating.


While the value of volunteering in the sport sector is not included in GDP figures, it does have a substantial bearing on the ‘economic value’ of sport to Australian society. Sport and physical recreation organisations attracted 2.3 million volunteers (about 38% of all volunteers), which is greater than the volunteer numbers in either the health or social sectors. The estimated contribution of sport volunteers is over $4 billion to the sector [source: Frontier Economics].

  • Sustainable Australia Report 2013: Conversations with the future, (PDF  - 29 MB), Australian Government, National Sustainability Council, (2013). This report provides statistics, information and analysis on key trends and emerging issues for Australia’s sustainability and the lifestyle of Australians. It provides an overview of volunteers in sport and participation trends. Chapter 13, ‘Community Engagement, Social Indicators’ contains information on volunteering and participation in organised sport. Summary Report (PDF  - 1.2 MB).
  • Contribution of the Not-for-Profit Sector, Australian Government, Productivity Commission, Research Report, (2010). This report highlights the economic and social benefits that volunteering has on the not-for-profit sector generally. This report combines ‘sport’ with ‘cultural’ organisations within the not-for-profit sector and estimates the economic value of volunteers in ‘Sport and Culture’ at $6.6 billion.

More information related to the impact of volunteering in the sport sector can be found in the Clearinghouse for Sport topic, Volunteers in Sport.

Events and Tourism

Tourism represents a significant industry sector, contributing and estimated $105 billion to Australia’s economy. [source: Tourism Forecasts, (PDF  - 329 MB) Tourism Australia, 2014]. Sports tourism is a niche market which can be broadly described as tourism generated by participation (as a spectator, competitor, official, journalist, etc.) in sporting activity. That activity can be a single event or series of competitions or activities; as with a touring team, interstate or international league matches, or a training camp. Although sports tourism may account for a small portion of the total, even a 1% share of the tourism market represents a substantial amount.

  • Towards a national sports tourism strategy (draft), (PDF  - 237 MB). Commonwealth Department of Industry, Science and Resources (2000). This draft document sets out a strategy for Australian governments and makes recommendations to support the growth of domestic and international sports tourism. It provides a definition of sports tourism and suggests that sport can play a part in the future growth of the Australian tourism industry.
  • Tourism Australia. The Tourism Australian website provides general information and links to sport and recreation activities, places to go and things to do.
  • What should you pay to host a party? An economic analysis of hosting sports mega-events, Heather Mitchell & Mark Fergusson Stewart, Applied Economics, Volume 47, Issue 15, (2015). Governments all over the world put huge amounts of money into bidding for, and then hosting, sports events like Football’s World Cup or the Olympic Games. They also give money to professional sports teams and other mega-events to encourage them to locate within a particular constituency. This article examines the statistical relationship between tourism and three Football World Cups and five Olympic Games, finding very little positive effect. Given this conclusion, the article looks at why governments continue to bid for these competitions. It presents evidence that shows that these sports contests make people happy, and argues that politicians capitalise on this feel-good factor; harnessing the hubris associated with these events for political gain. The article then contends that the best way to reduce the politics associated with bidding for mega-events is to allocate them via an auction, rather than the wasteful rent-seeking methods that are currently used. 
  • Sport Tourism: The scale of opportunity from hosting a mega event (PDF  - 1.1 MB), Insight Department, VisitScotland (2012). This paper discusses the scale of opportunity presented to nations or cities when hosting a mega event such as the Olympic or Commonwealth Games. With particular focus upon London 2012 and Glasgow 2014, the paper analyses the key pros and cons of hosting a mega event and what effects they have on the host’s economy.
  • Olympic Games Rio 2016: The legacy (PDF  - 375 KB), IOC, (March 2017). The Olympic Games Rio 2016 delivered many inspiring athletic achievements that were witnessed and shared by a vast global audience through record-breaking media coverage and unprecedented levels of digital engagement. Against a backdrop of economic, political and social challenges, they also set new standards for legacy planning that have left an important heritage.
  • The Olympic Games Always Go Over Budget, in One Chart (1968-2016), howmuch, (November 2916). The water in one swimming pool turned green. Apart from that, the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio de Janeiro went off without a hitch. Preliminary figures also indicate that the Rio Olympics 'only' cost 51% more than originally budgeted – which by Olympic standards is a great success.
  • Going for the Gold: The Economics of the Olympics, (PDF  - 619 KB), Baade R and Matheson V, Journal of Economic Perspectives, Volume 30, (Spring 2016). In summer 2016, the eyes of the world will turn to Rio de Janeiro as it hosts the Games of the XXXI Olympiad, better known as the Summer Olympics. Unfortunately, the price tag of well over $10 billion for the event is adding to the already considerable strain on government budgets in Brazil. Faced with a nasty recession, cuts in public services, and rising unemployment, throngs of Brazilians have turned out to protest what is seen as wasteful spending and a misallocation of resources on the Olympics.

Australia has been highly successful in attracting many of the world’s highest profile sporting events, such as Olympic Games, Commonwealth Games, and World Championships in a range of sports, the Asian Football Confederation Cup, Cricket World Cup, Rugby World Cup, Formula One Grand Prix, Santos Tour Down Under, and many more. These events stimulate tourism inflows, international exposure, and other potential economic and social benefits. 

Various forms of economic analysis are based upon models that may have very different assumptions, particularly in terms of the initial investment and long-term legacy. Events such as the Asian Cup football tournament do not rely upon a major infrastructure investment and thus capitalise on other investment strategies. On the other hand, the lead-up investment in the 2000 Sydney Olympic Games appears to have had a slightly negative economic impact when analysed as a stand-alone investment.

  •  AFC Asian Cup to give Australian tourism a free kick, Tourism Australia, (January 2015). With more than 500,000 spectators - including around 30,000 fans from overseas - expected to attend the 32 matches being played across Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Canberra and Newcastle. PricewaterhouseCoopers have estimated that the economic benefit from hosting the Asian Cup could be as much as $23 million.
  • Record visitation for the 2018 Santos Tour Down Under, South Australian Tourism Commission, (15 May 2018). A record number of event specific visitors made the journey to South Australia to celebrate the 2018 Santos Tour Down Under, generating an economic impact of $63.7 million. The event generated more than 27,500 items of media coverage with a potential reach of 558 million people. International print media coverage appeared in 46 countries around the world across 566 different publications. 774 full time equivalent jobs were created by the 2018 event.
  • Gold Coast Marathon pumps $28.5 million into economy, Hon Kate Jones, QLD Minister for Innovation & Tourism Industry Development media release, (11 September 2018). The 40th edition of the Gold Coast Marathon generated a record-breaking $28.5 million and more than 100,000 visitor nights for the Queensland economy. 
  •  Socio-economic impact of the Sydney 2000 Olympic Games, (PDF  - 80 KB), Haynes J, Centre d’Estudis Olimpics UAB (2001). The total cost of staging the Olympic Games as announced by NSW Treasurer Michael Egan was $6.5 billion. Several projection reports on the economic impact of the Sydney 2000 Olympic Games appeared before the Games, they estimated that over the period 1994-95 through 2005-06 the Sydney Games would generate a total of $6.5 billion in economic activity, a large part of this through increased tourism.
  • The Sydney Olympics, seven years on: An ex-post dynamic CGE assessment, (PDF  - 225 KB), Giesecke J and Madden J, Centre of Policy Studies, Monash University, General Paper Number G-168, (2007). This analysis is based upon a computable general equilibrium (CGE) model. This analysis found that the 2000 Sydney Olympic Games generated a net consumption loss of approximately $2.1 billion. The increase in foreign tourist spending lifted Australia’s terms of trade by only 0.09% in 2000-01. The sectors that gained most were those who sold goods, provided accommodation, services and transport to tourists.
  • Economic impact study of the Melbourne 2006 Commonwealth Games: Post-event analysis, KPMG and the Office of Commonwealth Games Coordination (2006). The total expenditure associated with the 2006 Games in Victoria was around $2.9 billion. In terms of the impact on the Victorian economy, using a Computable General Equilibrium modelling approach, the 2006 Games was estimated to result in an increase in Gross State Product of around $1.6 billion. The positive impact of the Games on the Victorian economy is derived from two major effects: (1) the external money input into the economy of Victoria through tourist visitation, and; (2) the bringing forward of the activity associated with the facilities investment required to undertake the Games.

For a detailed list of international events held in Australia please refer to the Wikipedia topic, List of International Sports Events in Australia.

There is also a domestic component to sports tourism that is defined as any sports related trip of over 40 km that also involves a stay of at least one night. Although domestic sports tourism may have a lower public profile than its international counterpart, it can have a significant impact on a local economy. 

  • Reinventing rural places: the extent and impact of festivals in rural and regional Australia (PDF   - 2.4 MB), Gibson C, Stewart A, University of Wollongong (2009). This Australian Research Council project examined festivals from 2005-2008 in rural and regional Australia through a database profile of festivals across three states (NSW, Victoria and Tasmania). Sport made up 36.5 % of festivals captured. Information was collected on job creation, volunteerism, marketing and advertising, environment and community. This research will assist those planning sporting events in rural and regional communities.
  • The hidden benefits of non-elite mass participation sports events: An economic perspective, (PDF  - 769 KB), Coleman R and Ramchandani G, International Journal of Sports Marketing & Sponsorship, Volume 12, Issue 1, (2010). This paper examines the hidden financial benefits that non-elite events are capable of delivering for host cities. The paper provides examples of how mass participation (and other non-elite) events can generate substantial economic impacts comparable to, and in some cases greater than, those associated with elite events. The cost-effectiveness of hosting mass participation events, relative to major elite sports events, is discussed. 

Hosting a major sporting event may rely upon some level of assistance from State Government, and in some cases the Federal Government as well. Data on most economic inputs reflect the cost of facilities and infrastructure and organisational cost, including employment, marketing, and security. Profit/loss reports reflect only the direct outputs, such as merchandising and ticket sales. It is likely that a very substantial (if short term) boost to the local economy can result from a sporting event, which does not show on an event profit/loss statement. The various economic and social impacts on the community are not always apparent.

  • Circus Maximus, Play The Game, (21 May 2015). In this book, US sports economist Andrew Zimbalist analyses the benefits and risks of hosting a sports mega-event and finds that the economic risks by far exceed the benefits. 
  • How Global Sporting Events Score Economic Goals, Mike Fletcher, Raconteur, (2 March 2016). As another summer of spectacular sport beckons, what is the business case for hosting a major global sporting event? Is the investment in stadiums and infrastructure matched by increased visitor numbers and spending? 
  • Bringing Home the Gold? A Review of the Economic Impact of Hosting Mega-Events, Barrios, D., Russell, S. & Andrews, M., CID Working Paper No. 320, Harvard University, (July 2016). This article focuses on claims surrounding the direct or indirect mechanisms that facilitate the impact that ex-ante studies predict. We provide a review of these claims and their validity according to the existing literature.

Facilities and Infrastructure

Investment by both public and private sources into sporting facilities and infrastructure is seen as providing employment during the construction phase as well as essential community services. There is also an economic legacy of investment in major sporting facilities, as evidenced from the 2000 Sydney Olympic Games and the 2006 Melbourne Commonwealth Games experiences. There are lessons to be learnt from the hosting of less successful mega-events in regard to the potential economic (and social) return on facility and infrastructure investment. Evidence suggests that facility and infrastructure planning that adopts a long-term and multi-dimensional approach can produce a positive return on investment when measured over many years.

  • It’s how you play the game: Matching a region’s priorities with the right mega – or not so mega – event, Price Waterhouse Coopers (2014). PwC’s publication presents a framework for helping a city or region decide which event to host, based on key questions under the categories of overall readiness, venues, legacy, supporting infrastructure and intellectual capital. The publication then goes on to explore a number of key aspects on hosting sports events, including ways in which a city or region can maximise the impact of hosting events.
  • Game on: mega-event infrastructure opportunities, (PDF  - 915 KB), Price Waterhouse Coopers (2011). Investment in mega-event related infrastructure can impact upon economic development for three decades. In this report, the analysis focuses upon infrastructure investments and the long-term implications for the region where those investments occurred.
  • Looking for legacy: for a sustainable impact of major sports infrastructure, (PDF   - 1.2 MB), The City Factory (2011). Sporting infrastructure initially designed to host one-time events need massive investments. Therefore, it’s essential to look at sports infrastructure with a long-term view, as elements of an overall urban renewal.
  • Using sports infrastructure to deliver economic and social change: Lessons for London beyond 2012, (PDF - 2.0 MB), Davies L, Sheffield Hallam University (2011). This commentary examines regeneration legacy in the context of the London Olympic Games. In particular, it focuses on the use of sports stadia as a tool for delivering economic and social change, and by drawing upon previous examples, suggesting lessons London can learn to enhance regeneration legacies beyond 2012.

Further information regarding the links between sports and infrastructure can be found in the Clearinghouse for Sport topics Facility Planning and Use and Active Transport.

Goods and Services

Sport acts as a generator for economic activity for a multitude of goods, such as sports equipment clothing, and nutritional products; and services including everything from coaching, physical therapy services, to facility management. The goods segment is often absorbed into other statistical data, such as clothing/footwear or food. The services segment is by far the largest generator of economic activity. The ABS data indicates that in 2005 there were over 9,000 business entities providing sport and recreational services as their primary source of business, and serial data indicates this part of the sport sector was expanding. The sport service industry generated over $8.8 billion during 2004-05 to the Australian economy, and continues to grow each year. [source: Sport and Recreation Services 2004-05, Australian Bureau of Statistics, Catalogue Number 8686.0]

Australia's population appears to be a net consumer of sporting goods. International balance of trade in selected sport and physical recreation goods is in deficit; imports during 2012–13 were valued at $2.1 billion, with exports of $358.5 million. However, the export figure from 2013 represented an increase of 26% from the previous year, indicating an expanding export market for Australian goods. [source: International Trade in Goods and Services, Australia, June 2013, Australian Bureau of Statistics, Catalogue Number 5368.0]

Sporting Goods in Australia: An Industry Snapshot (PDF  - 9.9 MB), Australian Sporting Goods Association (2012). The Australian Sporting Goods Association (ASGA) partnered with Empirica Research to produce this industry report. Data was sourced from the quarterly ASGA member survey and a survey of consumer attitudes and behaviour conducted by Empirica Research. Findings from Australian Bureau of Statistics reports, other government reports, and academic literature was also included. Analysis generated four sections to this report: (1) macro-economic data; (2) industry sales data; (3) consumer buying behaviour, and; (4) trends in sport and exercise participation that influence consumer purchases. ABS household spending data on ‘sports’ is limited to equipment and does not include apparel or footwear, which is conservatively estimated to add more than $1.5 billion annually. 


The benefits of physical activity in the prevention of a range of chronic health issues have been well documented. Both organised and non-organised sports contribute to the recommended level of physical activity needed to maintain/improve health. The investment in sport and active recreation programs has the potential to produce significant financial benefit to the national economy, as well as personal benefit to individuals, in the form of reduced health care costs and increased productivity.

  • Does sports club participation contribute to health-related quality of life? Eime R, Harvey J, Brown W, and Payne W, Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise, Volume 42, Issue 5 (2010). This report studies the concept that community sports clubs provide opportunities for social interaction through both structured (organised and competitive) and unstructured (social) participation in sport. It has been suggested that involvement in club sport may impact positively on social and mental well-being.
  • Getting Australia Moving: Establishing a physically literate and active nation (Game Plan), (PDF  - 2.0 MB), Keegan R, Keegan S, Daley S, Ordway C and Edwards A,  University of Canberra Centre of Excellence in Physical Literacy and Active Youth (CEPLAY). Recent estimates put the cost of physical inactivity to the Australian economy at $13.8 billion per year, as a result of healthcare costs, lost productivity premature mortality. Sedentary lifestyles are the fourth-highest risk factor in reducing Australian productivity.
  • The costs of illness attributable to physical inactivity in Australia: A preliminary study, (PDF  - 371 KB), Stephenson J, Bauman A, Armstrong T, Smith B and Bellew B, Department of Health and Aged Care and the Australian Sports Commission (2000). The impact of physical inactivity as a primary and independent risk factor for common diseases is well documented by epidemiological studies. Therefore, the challenge faced by the sports and recreation sectors, as well as the health promotion sector, is to encourage large numbers of people to participate in frequent and sufficient physical activity and to change their lifestyle. This analysis concludes that for every one per cent increase in the proportion of the population who meet the physical activity guidelines, there is a concurrent $3.6 million annual saving in health care costs.
  • Sustaining health promotion programs within sport and recreation organisations, Casey M, Payne W, Eime R and Brown S, Journal of Science, Medicine and Sport, (20 February 2008). This paper explores the concept of health promotion by sport and recreation organisations, analysing the design, implementation and sustainability of such programmes. The authors suggest that health promotion activities through sports organisations can be successful; however, persistence is required for ongoing success.
  •  Surf Life Saving’s economic contribution to the community valued at $3.6 billion. The Price Waterhouse Coopers report, What is the economic contribution of Surf Life Saving in Australia, stated that for every $1 invested by government, sponsors and the community into Surf Life Saving’s drowning and injury prevention services, the community benefit was $29.

Whilst it would appear that there are many benefits to be accrued from a physically-active lifestyle, there is also the potential economic burden placed upon society in relation to the cost of injuries due to participation in sporting activities. Assessing the true cost of sports injuries is problematic because not enough is known about the social and personal consequences of sports injury. However, the available evidence suggests that the economic benefits of sport and physical activity are many times the estimated cost of sports injury.

More information can be found at the Clearinghouse for Sport topics, Preventive Health, Sport and Physical Activity and Cost of Sports Injuries.

Media, Broadcasting and Communications

The mass appeal of live coverage of sport makes the marketing and regulation of this content a matter of importance for sporting organisations, broadcast rights holders, governments, media services operators and the viewing audience. In a time of rapid change brought about by new digital technologies and consumer preferences, there is a degree of uncertainty in the sports broadcasting marketplace. However, the economic activity generated from sports broadcasting continues to grow.

More information can be found in the Clearinghouse for Sport topic, Sports Broadcasting.


  • Special Report on Rio 2016: Perspectives beyond the mega-event, Simon Marijsse, Politheor, (June 2016). Since the 1984 LA Olympics, the Games have gone hand in hand with attracting foreign investment capital, boosting tourism and constructing large scale infrastructures. Eight Years later, the Barcelona Olympics presented us with an even larger story of visual promise and urban transformation. Post-Olympics Barcelona started to symbolise the blueprint for urban regeneration. In this Special Report, (PDF  - 213 MB), ten opinion articles tackle, each from within their policy field, the changes, failures and new initiatives that occurred over the last months in Rio.


  • Economic Impact Assessment Reports, Canadian Sport Tourism Alliance (CSTA). A collection of reports on the economic impact of significant major sporting events held in Canada are available from the CSTA website. Specific reference to sports tourism and its impact on the local and national economies. 
  • International visitors drive sport tourism spending in Canada to $6.8 billion, Canadian Sport Tourism Alliance/SIRC, (September 2018). According to custom data tabulations from the Travel Survey of Residents of Canada (TSRC) and the International Travel Survey (ITS), Canada saw a continued rise in the value of sport tourism, with a total expenditure of $6.8 billion, an increase of more than $33 million over 2016.
  • Strengthening Canada: The socio-economic benefits of sport participation in Canada, (PDF  - 507 KB), Bloom M, Grant M and Watt D, The Conference Board of Canada (2005). This report examines the impacts and benefits of sport participation on individuals and communities, and on the Canadian economy and society. Household spending on sport represented approximately 2.2% of total household spending in 2004.
  • The 40-year hangover: how the 1976 Olympics nearly broke Montreal, Jack Todd, The Guardian, (7 July 2016). The Montreal Olympics left the city with a C$1.6bn debt, a string of corruption scandals, and a creeping sense of economic and social decline. Forty years on, how did the city survive?


  • Sport in China, Leaders Report, (November 2016). President Xi Jinpeng’s stated target for the nation is to develop a sports industry worth CNY 5 trillion ($750 billion) by 2015.
  • China Pro Sports Market to Hit 1.6 Trillion Yuan by 2025, Liu Xiaoping, Caixin Online, (20 June 2016). A new report says the sector will grow by 20 percent per year over the next decade, fuelled by demand for high-quality entertainment and Beijing's desire to boost national team
  • Chinese sports industry aims to reach $460b in 5-year plan, China Daily, (9 May 2016). The Chinese sports industry will amount to over three trillion yuan ($460 billion) by the end of 2020, according to China's sports development five-year plan released. "China's overall sports industry turnout will be amounting to more than three trillion yuan, accounting for one percent in GDP with the added value of sports service taking up 30percent in the overall sports industry," said the five year plan issued by China's State General Administration of Sports


  • How much is Euro 2016 worth? MacIntosh R, The Conversation, (10 June 2016) There are two ways of viewing the fact that a record 24 national teams are competing to lift the Henri Delaunay Cup at Euro 2016 in France. Some regard UEFA’s decision to include nearly half of its 55 members as a move to leverage football’s ability to bring people together in a celebration of sport and national identity. The more cynical argue that inflating the scope and scale of the tournament is driven more by financial motives than sporting or political ones. The steady rise from the four teams that contested the inaugural finals of 1960 through the years of eight and 16 teams to the new set-up means more games and therefore more commercial activity.
  • Mapping and Analysis of the Specificity of Sport: A Final Report to the DG Education & Culture of the European Commission, (PDF  - 1.0 MB) European Commission, (June 2016). This report provides an analysis of recent EU rulings and decisions relating to the ‘specificity of sport’ since 2007. The 'specificity of sport’ refers to the inherent characteristics of sport which set it apart from other economic and social activities. The ‘specificity of sport’ has become a legal concept established and developed through the rulings of the European Court of Justice and through decisional practice of the European Commission, notably as regards competition rules. As set out in the White Paper on Sport, the recognition of the specificity of sport requires an assessment of the compatibility of sporting rules with EU law on a case-by-case basis.
  • Medical professionals should prescribe sport and physical activity, says European Commission, Matthew Campelli, Sports Management, (12 July 2016). The prescription of physical activity by medical professionals and increased funding to support the inclusion of refugees are two of several recommendations made in a new grassroots sport report published by the European Commission. It also highlights the important economic multiplier that sport contributes to.
  • Sport-related industry in the European Union − the size and effect, Severis Z, Sport Unit, Directorate-General for Education and Culture, European Commission, IP Conference, (June 2016).
  • The value of alpine skiing to the Austrian population: A CVM study of the 2017 World Championships, Bernd Frick & Pamela Wicker, Managing Sport & Leisure, (published online 21 August 2018). This study estimates the monetary value of alpine skiing to the Austrian resident population using the contingent valuation method (CVM). Survey respondents across Austria were asked to state their willingness-to-pay (WTP) for broadcasting the 2017 World Championships and for an athlete support programme over a five-year period (n = 862). Approximately 29% and 20% of respondents reported a positive WTP for broadcasting and monthly support of alpine athletes over a five-year period, respectively. Average WTP was €25 (broadcasting) and €8 (athlete support). Individuals with high medal expectations were more likely to state a positive WTP for broadcasting, while the amount of WTP was positively affected by consumption capital and the importance of symbolic capital (public goods), such as happiness from sporting success. Aggregate WTP exceeded public funding received by the Austrian Skiing Association by a margin, indicating that intangible benefits of alpine skiing are higher than its costs.


  • Euro 2016 generates €1.22bn boost to French economy - report, Sport Business International, (12 January 2017). France’s hosting of the Uefa Euro 2016 national team football tournament provided a boost to the national economy of €1.22bn ($1.28bn), according to a report issued by the Centre for Law and Economics of Sport (CDES).


  • Assessment of economic impact of sport in Ireland, (PDF  - 1.2 MB), Indecon International Economic Consultants (2010). This report looks at the structure of Irish sport and assesses the economic impact of sport related activities, the volunteer sector, household and consumer spending, employment, and health impacts. Consumer spending on sport and sporting goods and services was 2% of total household spending. The estimated contribution of the sport sector to the Irish economy was approximately 1.4% of GDP. In terms of government contribution to sport, for every €100 invested, there was a return of €149 in related revenue.

New Zealand

United Kingdom

  • The Impact Of Public Funding On Olympic Performance And Mass Participation In Great Britain (PDF  - 1.0 MB), Desislava Goranova, Coventry University, (June 2014). There is a rising tendency among countries to prioritise some sports over others and make higher investments of money and resources in their elite development (Green and Oakley, 2001). Such policies and strategies are adopted in the UK, too. Some sports are considered more likely to bring Olympic medals than others and therefore, they are targeted to receive higher funding. Those placed outside the selection are more likely to face challenges in practices to develop their winning potential. This research will aim to establish if such relationship exists between Olympic sports funding distribution, Olympic performance, and national participation numbers. It will provide a critical review of the British sport system and relevant policies, and it will explore where the written policies do not reflect the relevant actions undertaken.
  • Reconomics Plus, UK Sport and Recreation Alliance, (February 2017). The Sport and Recreation Alliance launched Reconomics Plus (PDF  - 1.3 MB), an online resource to help sport and recreation organisations demonstrate the impact of their work on the economy, our health and local communities. This new resource brings together the latest research and statistics, produced in partnership with Manchester Metropolitan University, to highlight the contribution of outdoor recreation in England.
  • Government publishes annual progress report on ‘Sporting Future’, GOV.UK, (9 February 2017). The UK government has published its first annual progress report on its new sport strategy that aims to get the nation more active for the positive impact it has on people’s health, local communities and the economy.
  • 2012, 2014 and 2015 Sport Satellite Account for the UK, GOV.UK, (January 2017). This report (PDF  - 2.0 MB) contains data on the economic value of sport to the economy, including the number of people employed in this sector, and cover the 2012, 2014 and 2015 period.
  • Prepare for a record-breaking Premier League transfer window, Rob Wilson and Dan Plumley, The Conversation, (6 January 2017). If a week is a long time in politics, then a month in football can seem like an eternity. The English Premier League January transfer window is now a well-established tradition that can tease, delight and disappoint supporters in equal measure, delivering a ceaseless flow of news and half news all wrapped up in eye-watering spending by the clubs.
  • Volunteering in an Active Nation, Sport England, (December 2016). Volunteers who give their time for sport and physical activity to happen in their community enjoy many of the benefits associated with actually participating in sport and physical activity. In some cases their experience fulfils all the government’s outcomes for sport: physical and mental wellbeing, individual development, social and community development, and economic development.
  • Price of Football 2016: Premier League cuts cost of tickets, BBC Sport, (November 29016). The cost of attending Premier League football has come down in the first season of a record £8bn global TV rights deal, a BBC study has found.
  • Passion for leisure: A view of the UK leisure consumer, Deloitte, (July 2016). Consumer behaviour is changing as the growth of the collaborative economy and a rise in spending in the leisure sector is seeing consumers shift away from spending money on owning goods and services, to becoming more comfortable paying for access to goods, services and experiences. Consumers increasingly want to enrich their lives with experiences and make their spare time more enjoyable by seeking services that bring convenience and enjoyment. Simultaneously the broader macroeconomic drivers have helped consumers to have more disposable income, which they are increasingly choosing to spend on leisure activities. The report discusses the rise of the leisure consumer and provides a Deloitte view on the significance of the UK Leisure Consumer to the economy. Using proprietary consumer research it provides a picture of current consumer expenditure on leisure and an outlook on how that is likely to develop.
  • Britain's sport industry hitting top formThe Independent (May 2015). Across football, rugby and cycling, economic activity around sport is growing. . Supporting over 450,000 jobs in the UK, sport has become over the last five years a £20bn industry in the UK but experts believe this is just the beginning as more money flows into the fast growing sector.
  • Economic importance of sport in Scotland 1998 to 2012, (PDF  - 97 KB), SportScotland, (2014). The latest economic data show that sport continues to have a significant impact on the Scottish economy. Sport-related industries contributed £2.1 billion to the economy in 2012, this represents 2.0% of GDP.
  • England's Rugby World Cup billion pound extravaganza is the biggest and the best, says World Rugby, Mairs G, The Telegraph (October 2015). All records broken and there has been a huge boost to the UK economy as profile of World Cup is taken to new heights. 
  • Major sports events and cycling boom drives economy, Andrew Cave and Alex Miller, The Telegraph (7 July 2016). The London 2012 Olympic Games showed that Britain can stage world-class sport and a properly planned legacy can benefit the economy for years. 
  • New report confirms record-breaking Rugby World Cup 2015 economic impact, World Rugby (25 May 2016)RWC 2015 was the most economically-successful Rugby World Cup ever, with nearly £2.3 billion generated in economic output according to a report published by Ernst and Young.
  • Premier and Football League clubs generate £4bn revenues, BBC Business of Sport (1 June 2016). The 92 Premier League and Football League clubs generated more than £4bn in revenues for the first time ever in 2014-15, according to the annual Deloitte report, (PDF  - 943 KB).
  • Road To Rio: London’s Uncertain Olympic Legacy Calls The Promise Of Rio Games Into Question, Hanrahan M, International Business Times, (6 June 2016). As Rio gears up for its controversial Olympic games, we examine the extent to which the most recent Olympic host, London, delivered on promises of a lasting economic legacy.
  • Sport England launches new model to show the economic value of sport to local communities, Sport England (August 2014). The ‘Economic value of sport – local model’ provides each local authority with estimates on sports’ contribution to the local economy in the form of business output and jobs figures, as well as wider benefits like health. It also includes guidance on how local government and community sport organisations can best use this evidence.
  • Sport makes heavyweight contribution to England’s economy, Sport England (2010). Growth in the sport sector has outstripped the English economy as a whole over the past two decades. In 2008 the sport sector contributed about £16.7 billion to the economy. The full report, The Economic Value of Sport in England, 1985-2008, can be downloaded from the Sport England website.
  • Sport Tourism: The scale of opportunity from hosting a mega event (PDF  - 1.1 MB), Insight Department, VisitScotland (2012). This paper discusses the scale of opportunity presented to nations or cities when hosting a mega event such as the Olympic or Commonwealth Games. With particular focus upon London 2012 and Glasgow 2014, the paper analyses the key pros and cons of hosting a mega event and what effects they have on the host’s economy.
  • The Business of Sport Series, Daily Telegraph, The year-long Business of Sport Series, in association with Standard Life Investments, studies the sports industry in detail, meeting the main players and scrutinising their businesses and the markets in which they operate.
  • Social value of developing coaches to deliver high quality coaching sessions (PDF  -  3.3 MB), sports coach UK and Street Games, (October 2016).  Report examined the value of developing coaches to deliver high quality coaching sessions in the Tyneside community. The research concluded that the Social Return on Investment (SROI), which included physical wellbeing; mental wellbeing; individual development; social and community development; and economic development, was £3 for £1 invested.
  • The social value of sport, Sheffield Hallam University, England, published online (19 April 2016). Participation in sport in England generates social value of over £44 billion according to research by Sheffield Hallam University. This study, commissioned by the Higher Education Investment Fund and supported by Sport England, found that for every £1 spent on sport participation, a benefit worth £1.91 was generated for society. The social benefits of sport participation include: (1) reduced risk of dementia (estimated worth, £2.1 billion); (2) reduced risk of communicable disease – heart disease and stroke (£1.14 billion), type 2 diabetes (£239 million), breast and colon cancers (£180 million); (3) reduction in crime (£41 million); (4) improved life satisfaction (£30.4 billion), and; (5) improved educational performance (£5 billion). Summary Report.
  • Value of SwimmingSwim England, (November 2019). As the national governing body for swimming, water polo, diving and synchronised swimming in England, Swim England commissioned this research to build a robust evidence base around the specific benefits of water-based activity. The findings show how swimming can positively contribute to physical and mental wellbeing, to individual and community development, and help to reduce the burden to the health and social care system. Some of the key benefits suggested by this report include that swimming is already reducing health and social care costs by up to £357million a year. This includes estimated savings from dementia, strokes, diabetes, colon cancer, breast cancer, depression, and reduced GP and psychotherapy visits by those who swim regularly. Additionally, across the different datasets analysed, a positive association was seen between swimming and: social connectedness; trust (in general and of neighbours); community cohesion; volunteering; percieved ability to achieve goals; life satisfaction; and, health and mental health. 

United States

  • Study claims Los Angeles 2024 could increase economic output in United States by $18.3 billion, Michael Pavitt, Inside the Games, (9 January 2017). A new study (pdf) published today has claimed that Los Angeles could help increase economic output across the United States by $18.3 billion (£15 billion/€17 billion) if the city hosts the 2024 Olympic and Paralympic Games.
  • What is driving the growth in NFL team valuations? Sports Business International/Leaders, (22 November 2016). Team values are continuing to soar in the NFL. Barry Wilner asks what is behind the continuing success of the North American League and whether it will continue.
  • At the gate and beyond: Outlook for the sports market in North America through 2020, Price Waterhouse Cooper, (October 2016). The publication, authored by leaders of the PwC US Sports Practice, looks at recent results and potential opportunities and challenges to future industry growth, as well as revenue projections through 2020 within four key segments of the sports market; Gate Revenues, Media Rights, Sponsorship, and Merchandising.
  • US Sports Industry Market Research, Plunket Research (2013). Combined, the “Big 4” leagues in America, the National Football League (NFL), National Basketball Association (NBA), the National Hockey League (NHL) and Major League Baseball (MLB) bring in about $23 billion in revenue during a typical year. US sporting equipment accounted for $44 billion in annual sales. A reasonable estimate of the total US sports market would be about $485 billion annually.

Where possible, direct links to full-text and online resources are provided. However, where links are not available, you may be able to access documents directly by searching our licenced full-text databases (note: user access restrictions apply). Alternatively, you can ask your institutional, university, or local library for assistance—or purchase documents directly from the publisher. You may also find the information you’re seeking by searching Google Scholar.


  • Handbook on the Economics of Sport, (PDF  - 4.8 MB), Andreff W and Szymanski S (editors), Edward Elgar publishing (2007). Research into the application of economic concepts to sporting activities has expanded in recent years; whether it be the contribution of sporting activities to economic growth, competition for media rights, labour markets for sports stars or the economic incentives embedded in the structure of leagues.
  • A wider social role for sport : who's keeping the score? Fred Coalter, Routledge, (2007). The author posits the lack of a strong body of cumulative research evidence to inform policy-making and assesses the capacity of sports-based programs to deliver interventions addressing social and economic issues. (Available from Australian Sports Commission, GV 605.2.C635)

Fact Sheets

Government Reports

  • Economic value of sport and recreation in Western Australia, (PDF  - 1.0 MB), Government of Western Australia, Department of Sport and Recreation (2004).
  • Impact of Sport and Physical Recreation on the ACT, (PDF  - 1.4 MB), Executive Summary, ACT Sport, (March 2004). ACTSPORT commissioned ACIL Tasman to examine sport and physical recreation’s role in the Australian Capital Territory. The study finds that the sport and physical recreation sector is an integral part of the ACT’s community and its economy. It is now accepted that sport and recreation is an important source of economic activity as it generates employment and contributes to the ACT’s Gross State Product. What is less well understood is that participation in sport and physical recreation also has important benefits for Canberrans’ physical and mental health.
  • Intergenerational Review of Australian Sport (PDF  - 1.6 MB), BCG Boston Consulting Group for the Australian Sports Commission, (2017). In recent years, significant trends have been observed relating to sports participation, performance and consumption. To understand these trends and their impact in the future and to best prepare Australian sport to adapt for success, the ASC Board engaged The Boston Consulting Group (BCG) to undertake The Intergenerational Review of Australian Sport (IGRS). The IGRS had five objectives:
    • Objective 1: To identify the value of sport to Australia and the key forces and trends that are challenging sporting organisations and the sector as a whole;
    • Objective 2: To understand the current investment in Australian sport, within an international context; 
    • Objective 3: To articulate and quantify, to the extent possible, the return from the investment in sport in Australia and internationally;
    • Objective 4: To identify strategies to maximise the opportunities and return for all Australians, in line with broad government policy; and
    • Objective 5: To identify ways for the sports system to work together more cohesively. 
  • Game Plan: A report on the economic significance and management practices of 10 sports in South Australia, (PDF  - 2.4 MB). Government of South Australia, Office for Recreation and Sport (2000).
  • Value of Community Sport Infrastructure (PDF  - 5.3 MB), KPMG for the Australian Sports Commission, (2018). The Australian Sports Commission partnered with KPMG and La Trobe University to investigate the value of community sport infrastructure to Australia – including the value of economic, social and health benefits associated with such facilities. The report estimated that community sport infrastructure generates an annual value of more than AU$16.2billion to Australia, with AU$6.3 billion worth of economic benefit, AU$4.9 billion worth of health benefit, and AU$5.1 billion worth of social benefit. 
  • The value of sport and physical recreation to Tasmania, (PDF  - 3.3 MB), Muller P, Wadsley A, Adams D, Authur D and Felmingham B, Australian Innovation Research Centre, University of Tasmania (2010).
  • The value of sport to Queensland, Executive Summary (PDF  - 241 KB), (March 2012).
  • Why do people give to sport? Fundraising for sport in AustraliaAustralian Sports Foundation (ASF), (2017). In 2017 the ASF conducted Australia's first ever study into the motivation of Australians who donate to sport. The goal of this qualitative research was to help Australian sporting clubs and organisations better understand why donors donate and how to make the donor experience more rewarding and enjoyable. 

Media Releases

  • Commonwealth Games assets gifted to Queensland communities, Premier and Minister for Trade The Honourable Annastacia Palaszczuk and Minister for Innovation and Tourism Industry Development and Minister for the Commonwealth Games The Honourable Kate Jones, QLD Government media release, (21 May 2018). Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk today announced sporting equipment and assets like boxing gloves, barbells, athletics tracks, defibrillators, Queens Baton Relay road bikes and mini-buses would be donated to communities across the state. 
  • Gold Coast Marathon pumps $28.5 million into economyHon Kate Jones, QLD Minister for Innovation & Tourism Industry Development media release, (11 September 2018). The 40th edition of the Gold Coast Marathon generated a record-breaking $28.5 million and more than 100,000 visitor nights for the Queensland economy.


  • Bringing Home the Gold? A Review of the Economic Impact of Hosting Mega-Events, Barrios, D., Russell, S. & Andrews, M., CID Working Paper No. 320, Harvard University, (July 2016). This article focuses on claims surrounding the direct or indirect mechanisms that facilitate the impact that ex-ante studies predict. We provide a review of these claims and their validity according to the existing literature. 
  • Russia details economic benefits of Fifa World CupSportBusiness International, (26 April 2018). The Russian government has projected that its hosting of this summer’s Fifa World Cup national team football tournament could boost the host country’s economy by up to 1.92 trillion rubles (€25.39bn/$31bn).
  • Scaling down the circus to scale up the benefits – A proposed future for international sport events, Marijke Taks (PhD), University of Ottawa, SIRCuit, (17 April 2018). As Canada considers bids for the 2026 Winter Olympic and Paralympic Games, and the 2030 Commonwealth Games, this article examines the economic, tourism, social and sport participation impact claims of major international sport events. To maximize positive and minimize negative outcomes from hosting major sport events, we recommend a shift in thinking that builds on the opportunities smaller scale events present for host communities.
  • World Cup: Good for diplomacy, good for business, Pizzano-Miraglia P and Miraglia S,, (18 February 2014). Sport has long been used as a political platform for diplomatic relations in underdeveloped countries. The authors contend that hosting events such as the World Cup serves as an example of uniting governments, nations, fans and players


  • 2032 SEQ Olympic and Paralympic Games Feasibility Study, Council of Mayors South East Queensland & Lagardere Sports/EKS, (February 2019). The report considers two essential questions in determining feasibility. The first is ‘can’ the Games be staged in South East Queensland (SEQ)? The second, and perhaps more important question is ‘should’ Council of Mayors (SEQ) propose the hosting of an Olympic Games? It concludes that with an estimated bottom line of $900 million, early assessments indicate the Olympic and Paralympic Games are an affordable proposition for SEQ. The Council of Mayors (SEQ) encourages the Queensland Government to join with the SEQ Mayors in undertaking further economic assessments. 
  • Assessing the contribution of sport to the economy, (PDF  - 154 KB) Hone P, School of Accounting Economics and Finance, Deakin University (2013). Sport has always been an important part of society but it is now becoming an increasingly important part of the economy. Consequently, the measurement of the economic impact of sporting events has become a focus of some interest to a number of groups including policy makers and sporting officials. In this paper, the established procedures for measuring economic impacts are evaluated from the perspective of the nature of the information required by decision makers.
  • Assessing the Olympics: Preliminary economic analysis of a Boston 2024 Games – Impacts, opportunities and risks, (PDF  1.9 MB), University of Massachusetts, Donahue Institute for Economic and Public Policy Research(March 2015). This report neither suggests that holding the 2024 Olympic Games will be an economic success, nor does it predict economic disaster. Instead, it shows that staging an Olympics Games could be a net economic positive, but that success will depend upon smart budgeting and effective planning to avoid some of the huge cost overruns that have beset some Olympics host cities in the past. 
  • Changing the game—can a sport-based youth development programme generate a positive social return on investment? Ben Sanders & Emanuel Raptis, Commonwealth Youth and Development, Volume 15(1), pp.1-17, (2017). This study examines a sport for development and peace intervention initiated by Grassroot Soccer South Africa that promotes youth employability and leadership. Preliminary results offer encouraging evidence of progress into employment, education and training with positive social returns for the youth and external stakeholders, suggesting that this investment is cost-effective and impactful (every R1 invested in a coach yielded a return of R1.72 for society at large over 5 years). The results indicate that structured sport-based programmes can put young people to work and get them to study in a constructive manner, thereby stimulating economic growth and development. It is concluded that initiatives using sport to promote youth work merit greater investment, recognition and research. 
  • The economic contribution of sport to Australia (PDF  - 1.0 MB), Frontier Economics prepared for the Australian Sports Commission, (November 2009). This report aims to assess the economic contribution of the sport sector (community and high performance) to Australia. It looks at the present economic and social rationale for sport and the contribution of the sector to the Australian community and economy. “Sport in general (including for-profit sport activities) accounted for approximately 2% of Gross Domestic Product”. A summary article (PDF  - 152 KB) and presentation slides (PDF  - 159 KB) are also available. 
  • Economic costs of physical inactivity, (PDF  - 1.8 MB), British Heart Foundation National Centre for Physical Activity and Health, Loughborough University (2013). In developed countries, the consequences of physical inactivity account for 1.5%–3.0% of total direct health care costs.
  • Economic value of community club-based sport in Australia: Stage 1 report (PDF  - 1.4 MB), Chris Gratton, Graham Cuskelly, James Skinner & Kristine Toohey, Griffith University Business School/Australian Sports Commission, (January 2014). Whilst the literature on social benefits from sport has a substantial history, attempts at measuring and valuing these benefits have often been context-specific - i.e. for specific amenities in specific locations - and lacking a policy purpose. This research programme sought to provide evidence on the social benefits of sport, what these look like for each sector and different social groups, how these can be measured and how these benefits interrelate with individual well-being. Areas of focus included the impact of sport on: health & economic benefits; subjective well-being; crime & anti-social behaviour; educational performance; and, social capital. Overall the evidence identified suggests that potential health, economic, well-being and social capital benefits could be identified and potentially used to estimate value of sport to the community but the data for crime and anti-social behaviour and educational performance was more limited. 
  • Economic value of community club-based sport in Australia, (PDF  - 1.0 MB), Australian Sports Commission/Griffith University, (2017). The objective of this report was to develop a valid model to provide an economic estimate (i.e. Australian dollar value) of social benefits associated with the provision of, and participation in, club-based community sport in Australia. This was carried out using two measures of community based club sport participation: those taking part at least once per week for a minimum of 30 minutes, and those taking part at least three times per week for at least 30 minutes each time. The report estimated the financial value of 3 different measures of subjective well-being as well as for social capital. Although the income compensation values are high (billions of dollars) the authors caution that these do not represent any specific expenditures either by sports participants or government, but rather a theoretical value that would be needed to compensate the sport participant if they were prevented from taking part in sport in order to maintain the same level of subjective well-being or social capital.
  • Global Sports Impact Report 2016, Executive Summary (PDF  - 1.4 MB), Sportcal – Sports Market Intelligence (2016). This report looks at 83 world championships and multisport games that took place in 2015; attracting over 13 million spectators, countless hours of media coverage, and generating billions of dollars of economic activity. These events were hosted in 118 cities across 38 countries. This report estimates the international tourism impact alone was over $2 billion, US dollars. Tourism may be a primary economic focus of these major events, but other benefits to sport and related sectors (e.g. sports governance, infrastructure, media, sponsorship, social impact, and event legacy) may result. 
  • Learning Legacy. Through this project, London 2012 is sharing the knowledge and the lessons learned from the construction of the Olympic Park and preparing and staging the Olympic Games.
  • Reinventing rural places: the extent and impact of festivals in rural and regional Australia (PDF  - 2.4 MB), Gibson C, Stewart A, University of Wollongong (2009). This Australian Research Council project examined festivals from 2005-2008 in rural and regional Australia through a database profile of festivals across three states (NSW, Victoria and Tasmania). Sport made up 36.5 % of festivals captured. Information was collected on job creation, volunteerism, marketing and advertising, environment and community. This research will assist those planning sporting events in rural and regional communities.


  • Economic Impact of Moderate‐Vigorous Physical Activity Among Those With and Without Established Cardiovascular Disease: 2012 Medical Expenditure Panel Survey, Javier Valero‐Elizondo, Joseph A. Salami, Chukwuemeka U. Osondu,, Journal of the American Heart Association, Volume 5(9), (September 2016). The researchers provide evidence that participants reporting moderate‐vigorous PA generally incurred significantly lower health care expenditures and resource utilization, displaying a step‐wise lower total annual health care expenditure as moving from CVD to non‐CVD (and each CRF category). These estimates suggest the significant potential for health care savings through optimizing PA levels as a mean to favorably impact the increasing burden of CVD and associated costs.
  • Finance and Development, (PDF  - 4.4 MB), Volume 47, Number 1, (March 2010). This issue of F&D takes a look at the pluses and minuses of hosting mega sports events as well as the trade boost that can accrue. Economists who study mega-sports events have different views on the value of hosting such events.
  • Going for Gold: The Economics of the Olympics, Robert A. Baade and Victor A. Matheson, Journal of Economic Perspectives, Vol. 30, No. 2, Spring 2016. In this paper, we explore the costs and benefits of hosting the Olympic Games. On the cost side, there are three major categories: general infrastructure such as transportation and housing to accommodate athletes and fans; specific sports infrastructure required for competition venues; and operational costs, including general administration as well as the opening and closing ceremony and security. Three major categories of benefits also exist: the short-run benefits of tourist spending during the Games; the long-run benefits or the "Olympic legacy" which might include improvements in infrastructure and increased trade, foreign investment, or tourism after the Games; and intangible benefits such as the "feel-good effect" or civic pride.
  • The hidden benefits of non-elite mass participation sports events: An economic perspective, (PDF  - 769 KB), Coleman R and Ramchandani G, International Journal of Sports Marketing & Sponsorship, Volume 12, Issue 1, (2010). This paper examines the hidden financial benefits that non-elite events are capable of delivering for host cities. The paper provides examples of how mass participation (and other non-elite) events can generate substantial economic impacts comparable to, and in some cases greater than, those associated with elite events. The cost-effectiveness of hosting mass participation events, relative to major elite sports events, is discussed.
  • More than a sport and volunteer organisation: Investigating social capital development in a sporting organisation, Darcy S, Maxwell H, Edwards M, Onyx J and Sherker S, Sport Management ReviewVolume 17, Issue 4 (2014). This paper presents the findings of a study that examines the development of social capital within an Australian sporting organisation, Surf Life Saving Australia (SLSA). The study draws on the social capital literature across the not-for-profit sector and sport management social research. The evidence presented in this paper supports the growing body of literature that recognises the potential contribution of community sport organisations, through their networks of volunteers and stakeholders, to the development of social capital and community wellbeing.
  • Physical activity and annual medical outlay in U.S. colorectal, breast and prostate cancer survivors, Alice F. Yan, Yang Wang, Alexander V. Ng, Preventive Medicine Reports, Volume 9, pp.118-123, (March 2018). Analysis of both physical activity behaviour and health care expenditure for individuals with select cancer locations demonstrated that higher levels of physical activity could provide a significant reduction in health expenditure. Expenditure in adherence group was $9108.8 pa (95% CI 7410.9–10,806.7) versus 12,899.1 pa (95% CI 11,450.2–14,348) in non-adherence group. Stratified analyses revealed cancer survivors who adhered to their PA recommendation saved $4686.1 (1–5 years' survival time) and $2874.5 (11 or more years' survival time) on average pa for total health care expenditure, respectively. These findings have implications for both individuals and governments in relation to potential savings in health expenditure for patients with cancer, and potentially other diseases. 


  • Journal of Sports Economics, (JSE). This peer reviewed journal publishes scholarly research in the field of sports economics. JSE is a primary source of published research in the area of sports economics.
  • Sports Economics, Dr Liam Lenten on iTunes. La Trobe University offers an online course in sports economics. Topics covered include: labour markets in various sports, including the effectiveness of regulations such as player drafts and salary caps; the ways in which sports have coped with recent substantial increases in revenue and costs; the identification of the market for particular sports and the extent of competition within those markets; and the extent to which the commercialisation of sport is inconsistent with the traditions and cultures of individual sports. 


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