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Emerging school sport development policy, practice and governance in England: Big Society, autonomy and decentralisation

Mackintosh, C and Liddle, J (2014) Emerging school sport development policy, practice and governance in England: Big Society, autonomy and decentralisation. Education 3-13, 43 (6). pp. 603-620. ISSN 0300-4279

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Abstract

© 2014 ASPE. International interest in developing mass sports participation through systems of school and community sports development has become a growing field of public leisure policy interest. This research paper considers the policy change from School Sport Partnerships to the new 2012 School Games model of networked partnerships to establish characteristics of the changes in governance modes and implications from practice in England. The research project is based on a regional case study drawing upon in-depth, face-to-face interviews with key public policy stakeholders to inform an analysis of change. Initial findings indicate that the emergent networks are characterised by more networked-based mode of governance than previous hierarchical models present under UK New Labour. The study also shows the fragility of a reliance on partnership structures and the potential implications for incongruence in delivering policy outcomes and improving access to physical activity and school sport opportunities.

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