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Personal profile


Chris is a Professor of Applied Psychology. He divides his time between research, supervision, and practice. He has published over 100 papers, primarily in the area of organisational sport psychology and coordinates the School's doctoral programme in sport and exercise psychology.

Chris’s research has informed policy and practice in elite sport regarding the development of sustainable sport systems that enable people to thrive. Under the banner of organisational sport psychology, Chris leads programmes of research on organisational culture, sensemaking, resilience, and thriving in elite sport, and supports secondary lines of research on systems of care, psychological safety, and voice. This work has been funded by the world class programmes of British Olympic sports, national governing bodies and funding agencies in the UK, Canada, USA, and Sweden, and by the International Olympic Committee.

Chris work has also shaped national policy on organisational culture evaluation processes, board culture in national sport organisations, international qualification processes for the training and development of practitioners, global codes of conduct for professional ethics, and international society positions on mental health in eite sport and scientist-practitioners. Chris has also used this knowledge to serve the British Psychological Society’s Division of Sport and Exercise Psychology’s executive and training committees for over 10 years.

Chris is the Editor for the Journal of Applied Sport Psychology and sits on the editorial board of Case Studies in Sport and Exercise Psychology. He is the former Editor-in-Chief of Sport and Exercise Psychology Review, and a former Associate Editor for International Journal of Sport and Exercise Psychology, Journal of Sport Psychology, and Journal of Applied Case Studies in Sport and Exercise Sciences.

As an experienced practitioner psychologist, Chris regularly advises UK Sport and the UK Sports Institute. He was Head of Performance Psychology for the UK Sports Institute in the lead up to the Tokyo 2020 Olympics, managing a team of 33 practitioners. He has worked as a practitioner psychologist at three Olympic Games and with international athletes, coaches, and teams in more than 20 sports.

Teaching Responsibilities

Chris is the Course Leader for the Professional Doctorate in Sport and Exercise Psychology. He previously developed and led the School's BSc and MSc programmes in Sport and Exercise Psychology. His main teaching responsibilities include the supervisision of research and practice for doctoral students and he coordinates a module on Professional Research and Development Project in Sport and Exercise Psychology (Level 8).

Research Interests

Chris’s research integrates psychological and sociological approaches to advancing knowledge on four complimentary areas relevant to organisational psychology in sport: employee emotions and attitudes, stress and well-being, organisational behaviour, and high performance environments. Collectively, this work has influenced the profession via changes to the training, development and delivery of sport psychology in elite sport environments.  

Expertise related to UN Sustainable Development Goals

In 2015, UN member states agreed to 17 global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all. This person’s work contributes towards the following SDG(s):

  • SDG 3 - Good Health and Well-being
  • SDG 8 - Decent Work and Economic Growth
  • SDG 10 - Reduced Inequalities
  • SDG 12 - Responsible Consumption and Production
  • SDG 13 - Climate Action
  • SDG 16 - Peace, Justice and Strong Institutions


Dive into the research topics where Chris Wagstaff is active. These topic labels come from the works of this person. Together they form a unique fingerprint.
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Collaborations and top research areas from the last five years

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