The Centre for Sports Business conducts academic research into the business, economic, social, political, cultural and historical aspects of sport across the globe.

We have a strong reputation for research and cover a wide area of subject disciplines from sports economics to sports marketing, branding and governance.

Research interests

Sports analytics

The use of analytics in the sports industry has gathered momentum in recent years and, in the so-called era of big data, research into the field of sports analytics has evolved rapidly. The group has expertise in the application of quantitative methods to tackling a wide variety of problems such as:

  • Rating and ranking players and teams
  • Estimating the impact of recruitment decisions on team performance
  • Forecasting results of sporting competitions
  • Tournament design and seeding systems
  • Informing team strategy and selection.

Sports economics

The Centre has expertise in the application of Economics and Econometrics to study problems in the sports sector such as:

  • Modelling of audience size
  • Understanding the role of coaches in sport
  • Issues in sports integrity such as match-fixing
  • Player labour markets
  • Attendance demand in horse racing
  • The relationship between sport and gambling.

Sports finance

The popularity of sport, especially to commercial and broadcasting organisations, has resulted in an influx of cash to sports governing bodies, sports teams and clubs and individuals.

The group has experience and expertise in relation to how finance flows into and out of different sporting entities, and how it has evolved from having a local to a global business. The group has knowledge in relation to issues including:

  • Financial and non-financial returns from sports club ownership
  • Distribution models of centralised funds such as broadcasting income
  • Sources of finance
  • Cost control systems such as financial fair play and wage caps
  • Impact of finance on sporting success
  • Sports club valuation.

Sports marketing

The Centre for Sports Business at Liverpool has expertise in the following areas of sports marketing research:

  • International Market Development
  • Marketing Operations
  • Customer Insight
  • Brand Management
  • Sponsorship and Business-to-Business Marketing
  • Organisation of marketing work in sports industries.

Horse racing

Members of the Centre have engaged in research into several issues in contemporary horse racing, primarily using quantitative techniques. Past and current projects include:

  • Determinants of attendance at horse racing meetings
  • Gender issues in the jockey labour market
  • Policies to improve field size in horse racing
  • Rating jockeys and horses
  • Characteristics and behaviour of horse bettors.

PhD opportunities

We are happy to consider PhD proposals from any area of sport business including: sports analytics, sports economics, sports finance and sports marketing.

Enquirires should be made to the academic most suited to your area of interest. 

Consultancy work

Specialists from within the CSB undertake research and provide independent advice to private organisations, clubs, governing bodies and federations on a range of issues. Example projects and clients include:

  • Developing the EA SPORTS Player Performance Index, the official player rating system of the Barclays Premier League
  • Assessment of the processes used by UEFA for monitoring betting markets for signs of corruptions
  • Customer Insight and International Market Research in China for Everton Football Club
  • Internationalisation processes and market development in China for Tottenham Hotspur Football Club
  • Small business development in overseas markets for Reebok Crossfit.

For further information on benefits of using our consultancy service to assist your organisation please contact Professor Sue Bridgewater on .

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