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Sport Journal Call for Papers: Esports Management

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The Sport Journal Editorial Board |

Esports as an industry is now over 20 years old and it has grown exponentially when compared to other generic industries, representing the sixth largest global growth at the industrial level (Eurostat, 2019; Southall, Nagel, LeGrande, & Han, 2003). There are now over 150 sports teams and counting involved in Esports, e.g., Philadelphia 76ers, Golden State Warriors, FC Schalke 04, Kraft group (owners of New England Patriots) and many more are investing in Esports heavily.

Esport is not systematically institutionalized, and there is ongoing coordination to create evolving governance.  There are shifting rules, and there is a power game of the “insider” and the outsiders.  The industry is rooted in innovation, business, media, and fandom as well. These phenomena will require management professionals that are innovative and focused on business processes and practices that improve efficiency, develop and sustain customer bases, and minimize waste and maximize profit potential.

Esports were born digital, born global, and born agile, which makes Esports an exciting research target for sports management scholars. This special call for papers aims to serve as a platform for researchers, practitioners, and policy makers in various countries to contribute research about esports that will serve to improve sports management as a discipline in general and specially to help sports management educators better prepare future sports management professionals for a future in esports management.

We are interested in receiving both empirical research – such as it may be conducted in these times – and (shorter) theoretical and critical commentaries on the longer term – and present – implications of esports management as well as fundamental questions about how the field is unfolding.. There are almost endless avenues of inquiry to be pursued. Authors are encouraged to submit on the following questions:

  1. What are the work conditions in the Esports ecosystem and how are affected by strategic management?
  2. What are the strategies, processes, procedures, and operations that are specific to esports?
  3. What are the practices of live streaming gameplay, spectatorship, historical precedence, and interaction, and how are they operationalized from the management perspective?
  4. How will esports affect the fan base of traditional sports as traditional sports struggle to resume play amid the COVID-19 pandemic?
  5. How do consumers actualize and sustain the esports phenomenon through their engagement with the interconnected nexuses of playing, watching, and governing of esports?
  6. What data analysis techniques may be used to make observations to analyze in-game performance, team dynamics and formation, and interactions between players? What purpose will this serve in esports player management?

We are also interest in case studies of

  1. Social interactions between players,
  2. Promotional activities; broadcasting infrastructures; the socioeconomic organization of teams, tournaments, and leagues
  3. Nature of expertise in esports, player or entertainer
  4. Patterns of behavior associated with the social pressures of the virtual or social world, and
  5. Law in esports

We are not interested in papers determining whether esport is sport.  For the purposes of this call, we accept that esports are sports and should be managed accordingly. The Sport Journal invites you to help address the issue of esports in sports management education through your research and writing. For submission guidelines, please see http://thesportjournal.org/information/.

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