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Title: Understanding change in disability sport in the UAE
Authors: Hashem, Dawood
Advisors: Girginov, V
Keywords: Change;Sport;UAE;Disability;Organisation
Issue Date: 2014
Abstract: Despite an ever growing body of research on disability sport very little is known about its organisational dimension and the role disability sport organisations play in promoting sport and how they change and adapt to their environment. This is a critical omission and the main aim of this thesis is to fill this gap in our knowledge. More specifically, the study addresses change in disability sport organisation in the United Arab Emirates (UAE), which has different culture, religion, language, and laws as compared to the Western world .The main question addressed by the thesis is what factors, processes, and mechanisms are responsible for organisational change in disability sport in the UAE? Using a contextualist approach to organisational change (Pettigrew, 1985), the study is concerned with understanding long-term processes in their context. Three in-depth case studies with disability sport organisations were conducted covering a period from 1992 to 2012. The study reveals that Islam regards disability as a social issue whereby a Muslim society has the responsibility for individuals with disability as opposed to the medical or functional models, which place the emphasis on rehabilitation, functionality and personal responsibility. This interpretation of disability in Islam has shaped organisational visions and structures concerned with providing socializing opportunities and not with long-term strategies and performance targets. Change in the UAE disability sport organisations was episodic and reflected periods of divergence between the internal structure of these organisations and the environmental demands to be more receptive to political expectations and those of people with disability. Change was triggered by specific events which were responsible for shaping organisational structures, processes and strategies. The mode of change alternated between first-order changes, such as those prescribed by law and Governmental interventions, and second-order changes or those resulting from changes in cognitive frameworks held by various organisational members. Change was concerned with transforming the three organisations from places to socialise to professional bodies with rules and enhanced performances. An important finding with conceptual and practical implications is about the role of national culture (i.e., Arab) and religion (i.e. Islam) in shaping change in disability sport organisations in the UAE, where a significant distinction between religion and culture is established. The study identifies several theoretical and policy implications.
Description: This thesis was submitted for the degree of Doctor of Philosophy and awarded by Brunel University
Appears in Collections:Sport
Dept of Life Sciences Theses

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