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ISU hosts international seminar series focused on FIFA World Cup

Written by on February 20, 2023

NORMAL, Ill. – The FIFA World Cups of Soccer seminar team at Illinois State University focused their second seminar on February 15 on how sport can blind a fan.

This seminar in the assortment of the international seminar series was “Changing the Game: Sport-washing and the Politicization of Sport in the Modern Era”.

The Word Cup presents an excellent opportunity to take an in-depth look at how these events shape the world stage. Most recently the men’s FIFA World Cup held in Qatar highlighted how sport can blind fans and viewers in regards to ethics and equality. 

The sports management graduate program at ISU highlighted a term at this particular seminar to define how viewers and fans can be blinded into forgetting undesirable events surrounding a sport. This term used was “sports-washing”. The term is used to refer to how countries around the globe have used major sports events to clear reputations and bad behavior.

Associate Vice President for Research and Graduate Studies, Dr. Craig McLauchlan, discussed how a viewer’s personal motivations play a factor in the sport they choose to consume and how sport-washing can be a motivating factor.

“There was a lot of discussion amongst the crowd about whether we are responsible for our individual decisions on choosing to watch the game or to support them,” stated Dr. McLauchlan. 

The discussion for this installation of the series was hosted by the Associate Professor of Sports Management and Sequence Coordinator for the Graduate Sports Management program, Dr. Liz Sattler, Assistant Professor of Sports Management, Dr. Jin Park and Assistant Professor of Sport Management, Dr. Eric Kramer from the School of Kinesiology and Recreation.  

The series will continue on March 8 when the board will discuss the sheer joy of the sport and how soccer opens many doors during the “Joy of the Game-How Soccer Opens in our Community and Around the World” seminar.