The value of Supporter Liaison Officers (SLOs) in fan dialogue, conflict, governance and football crowd management in Sweden

Clifford Stott, Sammyh Khan, Erik Madsen, Jonas Havelund

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review

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Abstract

Evidence of the value of increased supporter involvement in football governance is limited and existing work focuses primarily on the boardroom, rather than on managing problems associated with fan behaviour. This paper addresses these limitations by documenting and analysing the role of the Supporter Liaison Officers (SLOs) in Sweden, a country that has salient concerns and difficulties associated with football fan behaviour and policing. We argue that the SLO role in Sweden serves as a model for empowering supporter engagement because the SLOs maintain a position as prototypical members of the active fans’ in-group. This in turn increases their ability to reduce conflict by navigating the complex objective tensions and dimensions of intergroup power and legitimacy that exist between the different stakeholders. The paper explores the implications of our analysis for understandings of the value of fan involvement in governance, dialogue and crowd management strategies more generally.

Original languageEnglish
JournalSoccer and Society
Volume21
Issue number2
Pages (from-to)196-208
ISSN1466-0970
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 17. Feb 2020

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