2022 November Meeting
Raising the Stakes on Representation
When discussing issues of representation in sport and societal institutions, it is often in the context of critiquing the hiring efforts of people from underrepresented groups and recognizing that efforts were efforts of mere compliance and exhibit the minimal symbolic changes. At this moment, there is a need to amplify how the focus on representation can be leveraged to raise the stakes on diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI).
Consider this, in response to the confluence of the COVID-19 pandemic and the Black Lives Matter Civil Rights movement, sports organizations reactively implemented policies and hired DEI personnel (i.e., staff, faculty, officers) and promoted initiatives, training, and education to exhibit solidarity. Arguably, some of these efforts were performative, while others did and are exhibiting an authentic commitment to social change.
The resurgence of the Black Lives Matter (BLM) movement promoted a racial awakening, illuminated culturally competent deficiencies, and encouraged a range of stakeholders from advocates, activists, legislators, political leaders, athletes, scholars, educators, non-profits, national and transnational corporations to reexamine their influence and impact in society. Power dynamics and differentials were further highlighted through webinars and open discussions, past social movements gained new traction (i.e., #MeToo), and policies, practices, traditions, and cultures were challenged to reimagine persona, social and sporting spaces. Yet, with social change efforts, resistance grew more. For example, social change efforts were met with overt pushback in education (i.e., Critical Race Theory scholars, K-12 curriculum in the United States), sport federations and associations held fast to discriminatory policies (e.g., Rule 50), and individuals, groups, and communities (i.e., youth, women, LGBTQ+, people of color) were met with legislative responses to their representational and intersectional identities.
One way the interplay between representation, power, and inclusion is viewed is through Bailey and Jackson’s Continuum on Becoming an Anti-Racist Multicultural Organization. The continuum suggests that being a fully inclusive organization in a transformed society should: 1) reflect full participation and shared power with diverse racial, cultural, and economic groups in determining its mission, structure, constituency, policies, and practices; 2) ensure members across all identity groups are full participants in decisions that shape the institution, and inclusion of diverse cultures, lifestyles, and interest, and 3) actively works in larger communities (regional, national, global) to eliminate all forms of oppression and to create multicultural organizations. In concert, DeSensi (1994) asserts, “Multiculturalism is not some politically correct concept that perpetuates actions that are still prejudicial but is rather the actuality of a true multicultural setting in sport organizations” (p. 63). Embracing organizational dynamics of DEI and multiculturalism is important, but there are deeper societal implications that encompass culture, identity, geographic location, language, legislation, ability, mental health and well-being, and moral and ethical interactions.
This 2022 NASSS Conference theme illuminates the continued need to raise the stakes on representation in every aspect of sports. We are seeking innovative sessions that advance the conversation and challenge current opinions and viewpoints.
We encourage session organizers to elicit creativity and innovation in developing topics. We also encourage sessions that challenge dominant philosophies of the hegemonic structures. This call will generate session topics for conference participants to choose from during the Call for Abstracts in April. Session organizers for included sessions are responsible for accepting or declining participants to their sessions.
Call for Sessions
**The call for Sessions Deadline has been extended to Thursday, May 5th*
Click here to view the call for Sessions
2022 NASSS VEGAS CALL FOR SESSIONS
Please use the following link to submit your session.
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