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2020/2021  KAN-CCMVV4056U  Sports Digitalization: A New Game

English Title
Sports Digitalization: A New Game

Course information

Language English
Course ECTS 7.5 ECTS
Type Elective
Level Full Degree Master
Duration One Semester
Start time of the course Autumn
Timetable Course schedule will be posted at calendar.cbs.dk
Max. participants 70
Study board
Study Board for MSc in Economics and Business Administration
Course coordinator
  • Jonas Hedman - Department of Digitalisation
  • Xiao Xiao - Department of Digitalisation
Main academic disciplines
  • Information technology
  • Innovation
  • Marketing
Teaching methods
  • Blended learning
Last updated on 04-06-2020

Relevant links

Learning objectives
The learning objectives of the course are:
  • to understand the nature of sports
  • to identify the drivers of the digitalization of sports
  • to analyse the influence of digitalization in different functional areas of sports
  • to understand the unique features of e-sports
  • to reflect on the future of sports in the digital era
Sports Digitalization: A New Game:
Exam ECTS 7,5
Examination form Home assignment - written product
Individual or group exam Individual exam
Size of written product Max. 15 pages
Assignment type Report
Duration Written product to be submitted on specified date and time.
Grading scale 7-point grading scale
Examiner(s) Internal examiner and second internal examiner
Exam period Autumn
Make-up exam/re-exam
Same examination form as the ordinary exam
Course content, structure and pedagogical approach

Ever since the first Olympic Games was held at Olympia, Greece in 776 BC, sports as a field has accumulated a strong tradition, filled with glory and heroism. At that time, there were only seven sports: running, long jump, shot put, javelin, boxing, pankration, and equestrian events. Today, there are over 8.000 indigenous sports.

Recent years have witnessed a major development in sports – wide-spread digitalization, which can be traced all the way back to Michael Lewis’ work on how Billy Beane, the head coach of Oakland Athletics, deployed analytics to make evidence-based decisions regarding the composition of the team. Nowadays, the use of digital technologies in sports is even more pervasive. On one hand, the trend of using analytical technologies to support performance enhancement (for the sake of winning) continues and intensifies. One the other hand, the utilization of digital technologies in sports also expands to areas such as organizing and managing sports teams and their stakeholders, accessing and interpreting sports information, inventing new instruments and strategies that would not be possible without these technologies. Finally, digitalization led to creation of new sports – e-Sports, which poses profound implications for the very nature of the sports field.


This course charters an in-depth examination of the sports digitalization and how digitalization transforms the conditions for professional sports. Specifically, we will discuss the influence of digitalization along different functional areas of professional sports, including performance management, marketing and fan/customer engagement, event and facility management, and talent management. Technologies that will be covered in the discussion include but are not limited to: analytic technologies, Internet of Things, Artificial Intelligence, virtual reality and augmented reality, etc. We will also discuss e-sports and its characteristics, the (potential) synergy between e-sports and traditional sports, as well as the future of digital sports.

Description of the teaching methods
The learning activities are lectures, case studies, workshops, and guest lectures. The lectures will give the participants an overview of the sports digitalization. The case studies and guest lectures will provide practical insights on how digital tools have been utilized in different sports areas and consequently change the sports industry.
Feedback during the teaching period
Feedback will be provided throughout the course and during project workshops.
Student workload
Lectures and practical sessions 33 hours
Preparation of lectures (incl. reading) 68 hours
Exam preparation and exam 105 hours
Expected literature

*This list is subject to further changes.


  • Bee, C. C., and Havitz, M. E. 2010. “Exploring the Relationship Between Involvement, Fan Attraction, Psychological Commitment and Behavioural Loyalty in a Sports Spectator Context,” International Journal of Sports Marketing and Sponsorship, (11:2), pp. 37–54.
  • Davenport, T. H. 2014a. “Analytics in Sports: The New Science of Winning,” (available at http:/​/​balancedoffense.com/​uploads/​8/​2/​3/​7/​82373604/​iia_-_analytics_in_sports.pdf).
  • Davenport, T. H. 2014b. “What Businesses Can Learn From Sports Analytics,” MIT Sloan Management Review, (55:4), p. 10.
  • Gantz, W., & Lewis, N. (2014). Sports on traditional and newer digital media: Is there really a fight for fans?. Television & New Media, 15(8), 760-768.
  • Hamari, J., and Sjöblom, M. 2017. “What Is eSports and Why Do People Watch It?,” SSRN Scholarly Paper No. ID 2686182, Rochester, NY: Social Science Research Network (available at https:/​/​papers.ssrn.com/​abstract=2686182).
  • Heere, B. (2018). Embracing the sportification of society: defining e-sports through a polymorphic view on sport. Sport Management Review21(1), 21-24.
  • Holland, C. 2015. “Internet and Social Media Strategy in Sports Marketing,” ECIS 2015 Completed Research Papers.
  • Rosell Llorens, M. (2017). eSport gaming: the rise of a new sports practice. Sport, Ethics and Philosophy, 11(4), 464-476.
  • Loy, J. W. 1968. “The Nature of Sport: A Definitional Effort,” Quest, (10:1), pp. 1–15.
  • Mueller, F. F. (2009). Digital sport: Merging gaming with sports to enhance physical activities such as jogging. In Digital Sport for Performance Enhancement and Competitive Evolution: Intelligent Gaming Technologies (pp. 150-166). IGI Global.
  • Sanderson, J. 2013. “From Loving the Hero to Despising the Villain: Sports Fans, Facebook, and Social Identity Threats,” Mass Communication and Society, (16:4), pp. 487–509
  • Serazio, M. 2013. “The Elementary Forms of Sports Fandom: A Durkheimian Exploration of Team Myths, Kinship, and Totemic Rituals,” Communication & Sport, (1:4), pp. 303–325
  • Rathonyi, G., Müller, A., & Rathonyi-Odor, K. (2018). How digital technologies are changing sport?. APSTRACT: Applied Studies in Agribusiness and Commerce, 12(1033-2019-3296), 89-96.
  • Reilly, S., Barron, P., Cahill, V., Moran, K., & Haahr, M. (2009). Digital Sport for Performance Enhancement and Competitive Evolution: Intelligent Gaming Technologies, ch. A General-Purpose Taxonomy of Computer-Augmented Sports Systems. Hershey.
  • Tan, F., Hedman, J., and Xiao, X. 2017. “Beyond ‘Moneyball’ to Analytics Leadership in Sports: An Ecological Analysis of Fc Bayern Munich’s Digital Transformation,” AMCIS 2017 Proceedings.
  • Troilo, M., Bouchet, A., Urban, T. L., and Sutton, W. A. 2016. “Perception, Reality, and the Adoption of Business Analytics: Evidence from North American Professional Sport Organizations,” Omega, Business Analytics, (59, Part A), pp. 72–83.
  • Xiao, X., Hedman, J., Tan, F. T. C., Tan, C. W., Lim, E. T., Clemenson, T., ... & Van Hillegersberg, J. (2017). Sports Digitalization: An Overview and A Research Agenda. In Thirty Eighth International Conference on Information Systems, Seoul 2017 (pp. 1-21).

Textbook (recommended):

  • Miah, A. (2017). Sport 2.0: Transforming sports for a digital world. MIT Press.
Last updated on 04-06-2020