Two UBC Kinesiology Students Awarded Olympic Studies Centre Research Grants

Nicolien Van Luijk and Caitlin Pentifallo, recipients of the 2013 Olympics Studies Research Grant

Nicolien Van Luijk and Caitlin Pentifallo, recipients of the 2013 Olympics Studies Research Grant

Congratulations to Nicolien Van Luijk and Caitlin Pentifallo, PhD students in the School of Kinesiology’s Sport and Sociocultural Research Group, who have each been a awarded an Olympic Studies Centre – Academic Research Grant for 2013. Under the grant’s terms, they are off to Lausanne, Switzerland for a month to conduct their research and consult the Olympic Studies Centre’s resources (a unique collection of more than one million archived documents, publications, official reports, photos and film archival material). The results of their research should be published at the end of the year.

Nicolien’s topic is: “IOC and UN: Examining the partnership of sport and international development. As part of my research it is my aim to examine the past and present relationship between the IOC and the UN in a bid to uncover how these two major international organizations have come to work together on so many diverse projects. Since 1993, the UN has acknowledged the role of the Olympic Movement in promoting peace throughout the world, and in 2009 the IOC became Permanent Observer at the UN General Assembly. Despite these developments little is written about the IOC-UN partnership and the potential implications for the future of sport and international development.”

Caitlin Pentifallo is investigating: “An integrative approach to indicator-based impact assessment: The Olympic Games Impact Study and its potential for change. The primary objective of this project is to supplement the Olympic Games Impact (OGI) study by presenting a broader and more informed picture of the policy outcomes and implications that hosting the Olympic Games can have on a host city, region, and a nation. The question most frequently asked of the material and information presented by OGI concerns the degree to which such changes can be definitively attributed to hosting the Olympic Games. Rather than attempting to answer this question by speaking generally to the enormity of changes occurring in a host city, region, and nation over the 12-year reporting period, this proposal calls for data collected through the use of tailored and targeted specific performance indicators to demonstrate how change has been enacted through Olympic-induced programs, policies, and projects.”

In 2013, 41 candidature files were submitted from 25 countries, addressing a variety of themes concerning mainly the Olympic Games and the Youth Olympic Games, the athletes and the activities, history, cultural and educational aspects of the Olympic Movement. This is not the first time UBC Kinesiology students have been selected, in 2008 Xinquan Yang examined the topic of “Managing corporate partner relationships to achieve sustainability: case study of the Vancouver Organizing Committee for the 2010 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games” as part of her Doctoral thesis.