Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)



Document Type



The need for an ethically conscious sport management workforce is evident in contemporary athletics (Simon, 2010). As the complexities of regulations continue to increase, the intricacy of ethical-decisions faced by managers similarly intensifies. Interestingly, future sport managers are rarely prepared with appropriate ethical decision-making education (Malloy & Zakus, 1995). This lack of education is problematic due to the far-reaching implications that managerial decision-makers have on firms. The aim of this investigation was to develop a novel ethical decision-making model for sport managers that can be practically implemented to resolve ethical dilemmas that they may encounter on a daily basis. The constructed model demonstrates applicability in three differing levels of elite sport (i.e., interscholastic, intercollegiate, professional). Furthermore, this review had a secondary purpose to advocate for an increase in ethical scholarship within the sport management field. Throughout the history of business scholarship, a series of seminal decision-making models and morality progressions have been presented (e.g., Ferrell & Gresham, 1985; Hunt & Vitell, 1986; Jones, 1991; Kohlberg, 1969, 1973; Rest, 1986; Trevino, 1986). Additionally, a multitude of contemporary ethical-decision making models for organizations were posited based on these seminal works. Despite this focus on decision-making in general business contexts, few sport-specific models exit (e.g., DeSensi & Rosenberg, 2003; Malloy, et al., 2003; Bridges & Roquemore, 2004). Therefore, in the dynamic business of sport, it is necessary to pursue the development of a comprehensive model that respects both business scholarship and sport as a context. In order to accomplish this main objective, this dissertation establishes and presents an analysis of the most prominent ethical perspectives (i.e., deontology, teleology, existentialism). Further, to tailor the model to sport, three sport philosophical foundations (i.e., formalism, conventionalism, broad internalism) are analyzed and incorporated. Lastly, this dissertation uniquely supports historical investigation during the fact generation phase of decision-making to provide a foundation for the establishment of conventional norms. Once the ethical perspectives, sport philosophical perspectives and conventional foundations are established, this dissertation relies on prominent features of seminal decision-making works in order to posit an etho-conventional ethical decision-making model for sport managers.



Document Availability at the Time of Submission

Release the entire work immediately for access worldwide.

Committee Chair

Seifried, Chad



Included in

Kinesiology Commons