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Personal profile

Scholarly biography

Dr Mark Doidge is currently a Principal Lecturer and a trustee (Membership Services) for the British Sociological Association (BSA), where is also convenor of the Sport Studies Group He is also Director of the Anti-Discrimination Division of Football Supporters Europe (FSE).

He is an expert in the sociology of European football fan cultures and the author of Football Italia: Italian Football in an Age of Globalization (2015, Bloomsbury Academic) and co-author of Ultras: the passion and performance of contemporary football fandom (2020, Manchester University Press, wtih Kossakovski and Mintert), and Collective Action and Football Fandom (2018, PalgraveMacmillan, with Cleland, Millward and Widdop). Dr Doidge is also co-author of The Short Guide to Sociology (2020, Policy Press, with Saini), and co-editor of Sociologists’ Tales (2015, Policy Press, with Twamley and Scott) and Transforming Sport (2018, Rouledge, with Carter and Burdsey)..

Dr Doidge’s latest research focuses on the role football can play in our understanding of important social issues such as climate change, hate crime, and refugees & migration. He has won AHRC funding on football and hate crime (an AHRC Network Grant on Football and Hate Crime, and an AHRC UK-Ireland Digitial Humanities Grant on Online Hate). He is also researching the role football can play in communicating about climate change and has worked with Pledgeball and the Football Supporters Association to develop toolkits. In addition, he researches on how football fans are helping refugees, both through practical support in camps and local communities, and through consciousness raising and fundraising. He is also interested in the role sport more generally can play in helping refugees. He has recently worked in partnership with Brighton Table Tennis Club on a Sport England funded 'Refugee Integration Project' and a British Academy funded project on Football and Refugees. 

Research interests

My research predominantly focuses on the political and social role of football fans and the social role of sport in general. This includes thinking about th eimpact sport has on climate change, the positive effect fans can have in challenging discrimination in football, and helping local communities and refugees. Social activism invariably brings fans into conflict with the various regulatory bodies, such as football federations, governments and the police. Understanding the wider political economy of football helps situate these conflicts in their wider context. I supervise PhD students on projects related to sustainability and sport, political economy of sport, political activism in football, anti-racism and anti-discrimination in sport, and the role sport can play in supporting refugees and migrants.

Supervisory Interests

I'm interested in supervising anyone for PhD or MRes with a passion for critically examining sport or fandom. With my expertise and networks across Europe, I would love to supervise projects on range of topics around political mobilisation, collective behaviour and community engagement in the world of sport (and football in particular). Topics could include: 

Sport's impact on climate change

Sport and Leisure in the lives of refugees and asylum seekers

Mental health and fandom

Football fandom across Europe – including ultras, away fan experiences, political movements

Political activism amongst football fans, including anti-racism and anti-discrimination, environmentalism or community engagement.

Sport and Hate Crime

Approach to teaching

I am passionate about the discipline of sociology and I seek to bring this passion to the classroom through research-informed teaching. My style involves having a clear narrative that critically engages with the theoretical and practical aspects of the topic. Where possible, all examples will be contemporary and I use a wide range of videos, case studies and visuals to engage students in a variety of ways. I consistently receive good feedback from students, and have been nominating for teaching awards at Exeter and Brighton.

Critical engagement is central to my teaching. Students should have an enquiring mind and be willing to challenge their own ideas, me, and theoretical concepts.

I actively seek feedback in order to improve my teaching. As an External Examiner at other universities I can see how things are done elsewhere and I try and incorporate these into my own approach.

I teach on a wide range of undergraduate and postgraduate modules related to sociology, social movements, sport, politics, and sports policy. I have also taught at the University of Exeter and St Mary's University College, Twickenham where I taught a range of sociology and sociology of sport modules.

External positions

Peer Review College Member (Academic), Arts and Humanities Research Council

2020 → …

Trustee, British Sociological Association

2019 → …

Member of Fans for Diversity Guidance Group, Football Supporters Association

2019 → …

Committee Member

2019 → …

Academic Group member

2019 → …

Study Group Convenor, British Sociological Association


Member of Inclusion Advisory Group, Sussex County Football Association

2017 → …

Convenor of Sport Study Group, British Sociological Association

2016 → …

Director of Research, Football4Peace

2016 → …

Director of Anti-Discrimination Division, Football Supporters Europe

2015 → …

Trustee, Hummingbird Refugee Project

2015 → …

Committee Member , Sanctuary on Sea

2013 → …

Early Career Forum Convenor, British Sociological Association


Postgraduate Forum Convenor, British Sociological Association



  • GV Recreation Leisure
  • HM Sociology
  • Sport
  • Refugees
  • Forced Migration


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