DMU scoops Europe's top sports management prize

On the night Lionel Messi and Barcelona underlined British clubs’ collective failure in this year’s Champions League, Leicester’s De Montfort University (DMU) was being honoured as the best in Europe when it comes to sports management.


DELIGHTED: Centre director Martin Polley

At an awards ceremony held in Lausanne, the International Centre for Sports History and Culture (ICSHC) at DMU walked away with Europe’s top ranked sports management course for its CIES/FIFA International MA in Management, Law, and Humanities of Sport, run by the Swiss Centre International d’Etude du Sport (CIES) and delivered by DMU.

And if that wasn’t glory enough for one night, the DMU team also received the ‘Professors' Choice’ award, voted for by academic course leaders from around the world to recognise the sports management course with the best reputation in its field.

The nine-month, full-time course, launched 15 years ago, last won Europe’s top honour in 2013 and last year claimed top spot in SportBusiness International’s world rankings for sports management courses. DMU’s ‘CIES/FIFA Master’ can name New Zealand world rowing champion Emma Twigg amongst its 31 current students from 26 countries.

The course operates in three stages across Europe, with the first three months in Leicester followed by similar length spells hosted by SDA Bocconi, in Milan then the University of Neuchatel, in Switzerland. This pan-European aspect of the course is cited by Professor Martin Polley, Director of the ICSHC, as one of the key reasons for its success.

“We’re particularly pleased to be recognised by our industry peers with the ‘Professors Choice’ award because they’ve seen just what a unique package we offer here at DMU in sports management,” said Martin.

“Other courses work on the management and commercial aspects of the sports business but we go much further than this, with our focus on law and humanities bringing a much wider social and cultural perspective which shows students where sports have come from and where they’re heading long term,” he added.

“The international aspect offers a wider variety of subjects, tasks and teaching styles – this makes for much greater opportunities, not just for students but also for the teachers in terms of experience, sharing ideas and learning from other cultures.”

Leicester Tigers rugby union star Graham Kitchener is another ICSHC postgraduate student at DMU. He had to delay his Sports History and Culture MA course this year due to his call up to England’s RBS Six Nations squad.

The university’s reputation for sports excellence was also demonstrated by the Podium Awards Bronze medal given to DMU for its partnership with the BBC in producing the ‘Sport and the British’ six-week series presented by Clare Balding on Radio 4.

Posted on Friday 8th May 2015

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