A lack of 'sustainability thinking' is evident at the heart of many of the problems that football faces today; from the huge amounts of money that clubs seem compelled to spend on what are often short-term gains - and the speculation, debt and market-centred ideology that goes with it - to the not unrelated deep disenchantment experienced by many football fans for a game that they still, despite it all, remain determined to love.
Sustainability here is more broadly conceptualised than focusing on environmental issues. It encompasses social and economic sustainability, albeit with a critical eye on the interdependent, often contradictory, relationship between what the United Nations regards as the three 'pillars' of sustainability (environmental, social and economic).
Fittingly, this book is the result of an international collaboration between an interdisciplinary network of academics and football industry practitioners, brought together by the Centre for the Study of Football and its Communities (CSFC), based at Manchester Metropolitan University, UK. The critical insights collected here focus not just on football's problems, but also how clubs, authorities, players and fans in a range of local contexts are positively tackling the challenges of surviving and thriving in the contemporary global game.
This book was originally published as a special issue of Sport & Society.
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