Supporter Influence on Club Governance in a Sports League; a "Utility Maximization" Model

Paul Madden, Terry Robinson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The article formalizes a seminal suggestion of Sloane, studying a sports league in which club objectives are multi-argument utility functions defined over profits, win percentages and fan (=supporter) welfare, thus combining the three objectives that have been addressed separately in previous models. Particular focus is on the consequences of increasing the utility weight on fan welfare, to capture the recent increasing supporter involvement in club governance in UK football. Positive consequences are unambiguously higher attendances, with more nuanced affects on ticket prices and player expenditure. A normative consequence is that positive profits for club owners indicate social sub-optimality. © 2012 The Authors. Scottish Journal of Political Economy © 2012 Scottish Economic Society.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)339-360
Number of pages21
JournalScottish Journal of Political Economy
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Sept 2012


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