School of Sport, Exercise and Health Sciences


Professor Richard Giulianotti

Photo of Professor Richard Giulianotti

Professor of Sociology

Professor Giulianotti joined the School in November 2011 from Durham University, where he was Professor of Sociology, and at different times Head of Sociology/Criminology and Head of the School of Applied Social Sciences.

He completed his MA (Honours, First Class), MLitt and PhD in the Department of Sociology at the University of Aberdeen, and took up his first academic post there as a Research Assistant (1990), followed by a Lectureship (1995), Senior Lectureship (1999), and Readership (2005) before moving to Durham.

Professor Giulianotti is a Fellow of the Academy of Social Sciences (AcSS), and a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts (RSA).

Professor Giulianotti's research interests are in the fields of globalization studies, the sport for development and peace sector, the sociology of football, sport mega-events, sport and policing/security, sport-related violence (including football hooliganism), social theory, migration, and sport policy. 

Five of Professor Giulianotti's research projects have been funded by the UK Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC). He is currently leading a two-year ESRC project investigating the Sport for Development and Peace sector. With Professor Dick Hobbs (Essex), Dr Gary Armstrong (Brunel) and Gavin Hales (Essex), he recently completed an ESRC-funded research project studying policing and police-community relations at the London 2012 Olympics.

He has published fifteen books, and many articles in mainstream and specialist social science journals.  He has acted as guest co-editor of special issues for British Journal of SociologyGlobal Networks, and Urban Studies, andhis books and articles have been translated and published in twelve languages.  He is currently guest-editing (with Dino Numerato) a special issue of the Journal of Consumer Culture, due for publication in 2016.  His forthcoming publications include: (as author) Sport: A Critical Sociology (fully revised edition, Polity, 2015); (as editor) The Handbook of the Sociology of Sport (Routledge, 2015); (as author) Hooligans e Oligarchi: L’invenzione del Calcio Globale (Balzo di Tigre/La Casa Usher, 2015/16); and, (as co-author) Policing the London 2012 Olympics (Routledge, 2016).

Professor Giulianotti and Dr Borja Garcia are joint heads of the Loughborough University mini-centre for doctoral training on ‘Sport and Citizenship’, which will begin in October 2015.  This centre will feature 5 PhD projects researching different aspects of sport and citizenship.    

Professor Giulianotti is currently supervising the following PhD projects and students:

  • Sport as a developmental tool for social change  (Leoni Baker, UK)
  • The impacts of the 2014 World Cup finals on Porto Alegre, Brazil (Billy Graeff Bastos, Brazil; funded by Brazilian government)
  • Qatar, soft power and global sport (Paul Brannagan, UK)
  • Sport and social integration among North Korean migrants (Young Kim, South Korea)
  • The impacts of the 2013 Africa Cup of Nations on South Africa (Jacqueline In’utu Mubanga, Zambia; funded by Commonwealth Scholarship)
  • The social impacts of the 2012 Olympics in East London (Helen Symons, UK; funded by SSEHS scholarship)
  • The legacy of the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park for East London youth (Jordan Dawson, UK; lead supervisors are Dr Heike Jöns and Prof Mary Nevill)


Current and recent research projects

  • 'New Development Frontiers? The Role of Youth, Sport and Cultural Interventions', (PI; co-investigators are Dr James Esson, Prof Martha Saavedra, Dr Aoife Sadlier, and Dr Sagar Raj Sharma)
  • ‘Football Fandom, Reflexivity and Social Change’, (PI/Scientific Coordinator; Dr Dino Numerato is Research Fellow), funded by European Commission (FP7) (€231,283), October 2013-September 2015.
  • ‘Sport for a Better World? A Social Scientific Investigation of the Sport for Development and Peace Sector’, (PI; co-investigators are Dr Holly Collison, Dr Simon Darnell, and Dr David Howe), funded by the UK ESRC (£335,000 approx), 2014-2016.
  • ‘Pro Supporters: Prevention through Empowerment’, (PI, Fair Play/VIDC; co-applicants include R. Giulianotti), funded by European Commission (€200,000), 2012.
  • ‘A Sociology of Policing and Police-Community Relations at the London 2012 Olympics’, (PI, Prof Dick Hobbs; co-applicants, Dr Gary Armstrong, Dr Richard Giulianotti), funded by ESRC (£348K), 2011.
  • ‘Sport-Based Interventions: A Comparative Sociological Study of their Effectiveness and User Experiences’, (co-applicant, Dr Laura Kelly; research student, Tom May), funded as an ESRC CASE Studentship, with support from Street League, 2010.
  • ‘Sport and Peace: a sociological study of interventionist programmes’, funded by Nuffield Foundation (£6K), 2008.

Recent Invited Keynote Speeches and Symposium Papers

  • Invited contribution to the conference ‘Sport4All’, Prishtina, Kosovo, 15 April 2015.
  • ‘Sport for Development and Peace: The Educational Dimension’, invited paper (financially assisted) to the 2nd International Symposium on International Development through Sport, Tokyo, Japan, 13 December 2014.
  • Invited presentation on ‘Sport, Soft Power and Development’ to the symposium Sport as Persuasion and Power in the Modern World, University of Edinburgh, Scotland House, Glasgow, 31 July 2014.
  • ‘Sport for Development and Peace: Critical Issues and Future Possibilities’, invited keynote speech (financially assisted) to the international conference, Fifth International Conference on Sport and Society, Niteroi, Brazil, 16-17 July 2014.
  • ‘The Olympics and Mobility: A Sociological Investigation of the London 2012 Games’, invited lecture (financially assisted) to Faculty of Economics and Social Science, Tübingen University, Germany, 13 May 2014.
  • ‘Researching Globalization and Sport’, guest lecture, Beijing Sport University, China, 25 April 2014.
  • ‘Sport and Physical Education Research in the UK’, guest lecture, Capital University of Sport and Physical Education, Beijing, China, 24 April 2014.
  • ‘Globalization and Sport: Key Themes and Issues’, guest lecture, Tsinghua University, Beijing, China, 23 April 2014.
  • ‘Sport and Physical Education in the UK: Research and Teaching Issues’, guest lecture, Shanghai University of Sport, China, 21 April 2014.
  • ‘Social Research in Sport: Major Themes’, guest lecture, Shanghai University, China, 21 April 2014.
  • Invited participation at the international conference Why was Boston Strong?, Kennedy School, Harvard University, 13-14 March 2014.
  • ‘Sport for Development and Peace: Critical Themes within a New Research Project’, international conference Sport in Politics and Throughout History, Joseph Karolyi Foundation, Budapest, 21-22 March 2014.
  • ‘The Roles of Different Institutions within the Sport for Development and Peace Sector’, 2013 Dream Together Forum, Seoul National University, Seoul, 22 November 2013.
  • ‘Research and Education in International Sport for Development and Peace’, Global Human Development in Physical Education and Sport symposium, University of Tsukuba/Japan Sport Council/Kanoya National Institute of Fitness and Sports, Tokyo, 7 December 2013.
  • ‘The Sociology of Sport, the Olympics, and Community Impact’, World Union of Olympic Cities, 5th Lausanne Summit, 1-2 October 2012.
  • ‘Globalization and Sport: A Sociological Analysis of the Critical Themes and Issues’, international conference, Football, Arts, Language, Culture and Leisure, Belo Horizonte, Brazil, 19-21 September 2013.
  • ‘The Sociological Aspects of Global Football’, international conference Football: The Politics of the Global Game, University of Warsaw, 29-30 November 2012.
  • ‘Sport Mega-Events in the Global City: The 2012 Olympics in London’, Global Studies Association 11th International Conference, Manchester Metropolitan University, 5-7 July 2012.
  • ‘Globalization and Sport’, colloque international Le Sport: de sa diffusion globale à ses pratiques locales, UFR STAPS, Université Paris Descartes, 21-22 June 2012.
  • ‘Football and its Global Communities’, international conference Football and the Community, Manchester Metropolitan University, 1 June 2012.
  • ‘Globalization and Sport: A Sociological Analysis of the Critical Themes and Issues’, international conference Play, Games and Sports, Center for Basque Studies, University of Nevada, Reno, Nevada, United States, 19-21 April 2012.
  • ‘The Role of Sport in Promoting Development and Peace: A Critical Sociological Analysis’, Center for African Studies, University of California, Berkeley, 16 April 2012
  • ‘Football and Globalization: Political-Economic and Socio-Cultural Issues’, international conference Konferencja Sport 2012, University of Gdansk, Poland, 15-17 March 2012.
  •  ‘Contemporary Dimensions and Future Possibilities within the Sociology of Sport’,Nordisk nettverk for idrettssosiolog symposium, Bo, Telemark, Norway, 23-24 February 2012.
  • ‘Football Violence – Background Factors, Key Social Aspects, Policy Responses and Strategies’, For Sport Without Violence, New Policy Center, Belgrade, 27-28 October 2011.
  • ‘Women and Sport: some critical sociological reflections’, invited paper to the Faculty of Physical Education, University of Sao Paulo, Sao Paulo, Brazil, 16 September 2011.
  • ‘Sport, Globalization and National Identity’, Faculty of Physical Education, University of Campinas, Brazil, 15 September 2011.
  • ‘Policing and Police/Community Relations at the London 2012 Olympic Games’, LUDENS research group, University of Sao Paulo, Sao Paulo, Brazil, 13 September 2011.
  • ‘Social Science and Football’, plenary paper to the session ‘New Horizons in the Integration of Science and Football (dedicated to Prof. Tom Reilly)’, European College of Sport Science Annual Congress, Liverpool, 6-9 July 2011.


  • Armstrong, G., Giulianotti, R. & Hobbs, D. (2015/2016) Policing the London 2012 Olympics, London: Routledge, forthcoming

  • Giulianotti, R. (2015/2016) Hooligans e oligarchi: L’invenzione del calcio globale, Milan, Balzo di Tigre/La Casa Usher, in press.

  • Giulianotti, R. (ed.) (2015) The Handbook of the Sociology of Sport, London: Routledge.

  • Giulianotti, R. (2015) Sport: A Critical Sociology, Second Edition, Cambridge: Polity.

  • Giulianotti, R. (ed.) (2012) The Sociology of Sport, 4 volume set, London: Sage.
  • Giulianotti, R. & R. Robertson (2009) Globalization and Football, London:  Sage/Theory, Culture & Society.
  • Giulianotti, R. & R. Robertson (eds) (2007) Globalization and Sport, Oxford: Wiley-Blackwell.  (This was also published as a special issue of the journal, Global Networks.)

Journal Articles

  • Giulianotti, R., G. Armstrong, G. Hales and R. Hobbs (2015) ‘Global Sport Mega-Events and the Politics of Mobility: The Case of the London 2012 Olympics’, British Journal of Sociology, 66(1).
  • Giulianotti, R., G. Armstrong, G. Hales and R. Hobbs (2015) ‘Sport Mega-Events and Public Opposition: A Sociological Study of the London 2012 Olympics’, Journal of Sport and Social Issues, 39(2).
  • Giulianotti, R. (2015) ‘The Beijing 2008 Olympics: Examining the Interrelations of China, Globalization and Soft Power’, European Review, 23(2).
  • Giulianotti, R. (2015) ‘Corporate Social Responsibility in Sport: Critical Issues and Future Possibilities’, Corporate Governance, 15(2).

  • Giulianotti, R. & P. Brannagan (2014) ‘Soft Power and Soft Disempowerment: Qatar, Global Sport, and Football’s 2022 World Cup Finals’, Leisure Studies, DOI: 10.1080/02614367.2014.964291.

  • Giulianotti, R. and R. Robertson (2012) ‘Glocalization and Sport in Asia: Diverse Perspectives and Future Possibilities’, Sociology of Sport Journal, 29(4).
  • Giulianotti, R. and F. Klauser (2012) ‘Sport Mega-Events and Terrorism: A Critical Social Scientific Analysis’, International Review for the Sociology of Sport, 47(3).
  • Houlihan, B. and R. Giulianotti (2012) ‘Politics and the London 2012 Olympics: The (In)Security Games’, International Affairs, 88(4).
  • Giulianotti, R. and R. Robertson (2012) ‘Glocalization and Sport in Asia: Diverse Perspectives and Future Possibilities’, Sociology of Sport Journal, 29(4).
  • Giulianotti, R. and R. Robertson (2012) ‘Mapping the Global Football Field: A Sociological Model of Transnational Forces within the World Game’, British Journal of Sociology, 63(2).
  • Giulianotti, R. (2011) ‘Sport, Peacemaking and Conflict Resolution: A Contextual Analysis and Modeling of the Sport, Development and Peace Sector’, Ethnic and Racial Studies, 34(2).
  • Giulianotti, R. (2011) ‘Sport Mega-Events, Urban Football Carnivals and Securitized Commodification: The Case of the English Premier League’, Urban Studies, 48(15).
  • Giulianotti, R. (2011) ‘The Sport, Development and Peace Sector: Four Social Policy Domains’, Journal of Social Policy, 40(4).
  • Giulianotti, R. and G. Armstrong (2011) ‘Sport, The Military and Peacemaking’, Third World Quarterly, 32(3).
  • Giulianotti, R. and F.R. Klauser (2010) ‘Security Governance and Sport Mega-Events: Towards and Interdisciplinary Research Agenda’, Journal of Sport and Social Issues34.
  • Giulianotti, R. (2009) ‘Risk and Sport: An Analysis of Sociological Theories and Research Agendas’, Sociology of Sport Journal, 26.
  • Giulianotti, R. and R. Robertson (2007) ‘Forms of Glocalization: Globalization and the Migration Strategies of Scottish Football Fans in North America’, Sociology, 41(1).