Do public subsidies and facility coverage matter for voluntary sports clubs?

Karsten Elmose-Østerlund*, Evald Bundgård Iversen

*Kontaktforfatter for dette arbejde

Publikation: Bidrag til tidsskriftTidsskriftartikelForskningpeer review


In many countries, voluntary sports clubs are the main recipients of public subsidies regarding the provision of recreational sport, and the economically most important level of government is usually the local government (i.e. the municipalities). The purpose of this article is to examine whether and how municipal framework conditions matter for sports clubs. Inspired by previous studies, we examine the role of direct and indirect public subsidies as well as facility coverage. The authors conduct analyses on a general level (for all sports) and specifically for five sports (badminton, football, gymnastics, handball and swimming). The differentiation between sports allows us to examine how municipal framework conditions might be associated differently with density and participation across sports. In the statistical analyses, the authors apply data collected among all 98 Danish municipalities. The results show that the municipal levels of direct and indirect subsidies are weakly correlated with both the density of and participation in sports clubs, while stronger correlations can be identified with regard to facility coverage. The analyses for the five sports reveal that the supply of relevant facility types is – with few exceptions – positively correlated with sports club density and participation levels within each sport. Thus, facility coverage seems to play a more important role for sports clubs than the levels of indirect and particularly direct subsidies.

TidsskriftSport Management Review
Udgave nummer2
Sider (fra-til)315-329
StatusUdgivet - apr. 2020

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