Violence and Aggression in Sporting Contests

Economics, History and Policy

  • R. Todd Jewell

Part of the Sports Economics, Management and Policy book series (SEMP, volume 4)

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-xii
  2. Introduction

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 1-1
    2. R. Todd Jewell, Afsheen Moti, Dennis Coates
      Pages 11-26
  3. North American Team Sports

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 27-27
    2. Janice A. Hauge
      Pages 29-46
    3. Dennis Coates, Marcel Battré, Christian Deutscher
      Pages 47-63
    4. David J. Berri, Ryan M. Rodenberg
      Pages 65-76
  4. North American Individual Sports

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 77-77
    2. Peter von Allmen, John Solow
      Pages 79-95
    3. Trevor Collier, Andrew L. Johnson, John Ruggiero
      Pages 97-109
  5. International Team Sports

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 111-111
    2. Ross Booth, Robert Brooks
      Pages 133-151
  6. Spectator Violence and Criminal Activity

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 153-153
    2. Vassiliki Avgerinou, Stefanos G. Giakoumatos
      Pages 155-174
    3. Stephen B. Billings, Craig A. Depken II
      Pages 175-187
  7. Back Matter
    Pages 189-198

About this book


Sporting contests have provided mass entertainment throughout history, and today generate revenues of approximately $200 billion annually in the US alone.  Like in the entertainment industry, the modern sports industry’s revenues are based on the entertainment value of output and more entertaining sporting contests imply greater game-day attendance, television revenues and sales of merchandise. Research by economists has attempted to understand and explain behavior as it relates to sporting contests, showing that standard microeconomic theory used to explain consumer and producer behavior can also be applied to the behavior of fans, team owners, league executives and players. One commonality among many ancient and modern sports is the existence of violence and aggression in contests. Compare, for example, a modern NASCAR race with a Roman chariot race: Only the technology has changed. From the perspective of an economist, violence in sporting contests is an outcome of the forces of supply and demand, and the phenomenon exists because fans respond to it.  Spectator preferences for violence bid up the monetary return to this behavior, and the rational response is a more violent or aggressive output.


The optimum level of violent or aggressive play in sporting contests is an empirical issue and this book contains chapters on violence and aggression in sports, concentrating on the reasons for the existence and persistence of such behavior.  Following a chapter devoted to the history of violence and aggression in sports, subsequent chapters are designed to cover the breadth of international professional sports including American football, soccer, ice hockey, basketball, baseball, auto racing, and fighting sports. Each chapter will contain econometric analysis of violence and aggressive play in a given sport. The individual chapters will examine whether or not a given sports league or governing body should intervene to reduce violence, and where intervention is warranted, extent of appropriate interventions is evaluated.  In addition to academics and students concerned with the economics and history of sport, the book’s emphasis on policies at the league and governing-body levels means this book will also be of interest representatives of those institutions.


aggression fouls sports violence violent play

Editors and affiliations

  • R. Todd Jewell
    • 1
  1. 1.Dept. EconomicsUniversity of North TexasDentonUSA

Bibliographic information

  • DOI
  • Copyright Information Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2012
  • Publisher Name Springer, New York, NY
  • eBook Packages Business and Economics
  • Print ISBN 978-1-4419-6629-2
  • Online ISBN 978-1-4419-6630-8
  • Buy this book on publisher's site
Industry Sectors
Finance, Business & Banking