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This subject provides an economic perspective on professional sports in Australia and the rest of the world. It shows how economic concepts and theories can be used to understand the operation of professional sports, and can guide decision-making on sports by management and public policy makers. It also emphasises how studying sporting competitions can provide a laboratory for improving our knowledge of human behaviour and economic activity. Topics covered include: the demand for professional sports; the design of sporting competitions; measurement of player and team performance; strategy and decision-making in sports; sporting labour markets; managing and coaching sports teams; umpiring in sports; sports gambling markets; and national sporting performance. The subject will draw on examples from many major sports and sporting competitions – such as the Olympics, Australian Football League, cricket, soccer, National Basketball Association, Major League Baseball and National Football League (gridiron).
Intended learning outcomes
Completion of this subject should enable you to:
- Classify, and identify the main characteristics of, different types of professional sporting competitions;
- Identify and apply relevant economic concepts and theories to understand the operation of professional sports;
- Apply empirical methods and available data to analyse the operation of professional sporting competitions;
- Use your understanding of economic aspects of the operation of professional sports to guide decision-making by team and league managers in professional sporting competitions; and public policy decision-makers with responsibility for professional sports; and
- Understand how data on the operation of professional sporting competitions can be applied to test economic theories of decision-making and market outcomes.
High activity level: Written communication; Application of theory to practice; Interpretation and analysis; Synthesis of data and other information; Evaluation of data and other information; Team work.
Moderate activity level: Oral communication; Collaborative learning; Problem solving; Critical thinking; Accessing data and other information from a range of sources.
Last updated: 21 February 2020