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Dr Mike Rayner

Senior Lecturer

Mike Rayner


Originally from Northampton, I joined the department as a Senior Lecturer in 2008 and am currently the Course Leader for the MSc Sports Management course. Having originally studied both my undergraduate and postgraduate degrees at the University of Portsmouth, I have since completed my PhD entitled ‘The Impact of Professionalisation on Rugby Union: Player’s Perspectives’. My academic career was preceded by extensive Operational management and consultancy experience in a range of different public and private sector organisations.

Research Interests

My main area of research is elite level rugby union. This research focuses on the professional developments of rugby union since its declaration as a professional sport. At present my research includes investigating the evolutionary process of the game, from its origins through to the moment it became a professional sport and most importantly, the state of the sport in today’s society. My research examines the global effect of professionalisation on rugby union, and particularly the impact on the amateur levels of the game.

I offer the below research areas on both the undergraduate and postgraduate degree programmes:

  • The Psychological Contract of Employment
  • The Economy of Professional Sport
  • Amateurism in Modern Sport
  • Exploration of the Strategic Sports Marketing Process
  • Management concepts in the Sports Industry

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