Journal of Global Citizenship & Equity Education, Vol 2, No 1 (2012)

Global Citizenship and the Ethical Challenges of ‘Sport for Development and Peace’

Simon C. Darnell


Recent years have seen increased recognition, promotion and institutionalization of the role of sport and physical activity amidst struggles for just and sustainable development on an international scale. This paper explores the ways in, and extent to, which global citizenship – the idea that humans are citizens of the world with global rights and responsibilities – underpins this institutionalization and popularity of Sport for Development and Peace (SDP). These connections are then used to put forth a series of critical and ethical complications regarding the mobilization of sport towards meeting international development goals. In particular, the paper argues that any progressive and ethical invocation of sport as a means of supporting sustainable development depends more on the ways in which global citizenship is interpreted and acted upon by SDP stakeholders than it does on the global popularity of sport as an entry into the field or context of international development.

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