Menu Close
Professor of Sport and Social Sciences, Bournemouth University

Michael Silk is a Professor of Sport in the Faculty of Management. His research and scholarship is interdisciplinary and focuses on the relationships between sport & physical activity (physical culture), the governance of bodies, mediated (sporting) spectacles, identities and urban spaces. His work aims to push at the ontological, epistemological, methodological, and pedagogic boundaries of the critical, social science oriented study of sport and physical activity. He has received funding from the British Council, the ESRC, the AHRC, the British Academy, Sport England, Women Win, and the Jiangsu Provincial Government (PRC). His current research addresses the relationship between sport mega-events and urban renewal, especially with respect to the impact of event-led urbanism on the urban poor. He is currently Co-Investigator on the AHRC funded "Romantic Scotland" grant (AH/P009808/1), Principal Investigator on the ESRC funded project titled "Sex work in the context of sports mega events: Examining the impacts of Rio 2016" (ES/N018656/1) collaborating with Professor Phil Hubbard (Kent), Professor Caroline Fusco (Toronto), Professor Thaddeus Blanchette (UFRDJ, Brazil) and Dr Barbara Schausteck de Almeida (UFPR, Brazil), and Principal Investigator on the AHRC funded Re-presenting para-sport bodies: Disability & the cultural legacy of the Paralympics (AH/P003842/1), collaborating with Hodges (Bournemouth), Scullion (Bournemouth), Jackson (Bournemouth), Stutterheim (Bournemouth), Rich (Bath) Howe (Loughborough), Silva (Nottingham) & Misener (Western Ontario).

Prior to joining Bournemouth in 2015, he was a Reader at the University of Bath, with previous appointments at the University of Maryland (Associate Professor) and the University of Memphis (Assistant Professor). He is Managing Editor of Leisure Studies and an editorial board member for a number of journals (including the Journal of Sport & Social Issues, Communication & Sport, Journal of Sport & Tourism) and recently edited The Routledge Handbook of Physical Culture. He has appeared as a guest related to his research on BBC Radio 5Live, BBC Scotland, Sky News, CBC (Canada), TVNZ (New Zealand) as well as having written invited articles for The Guardian, Forbes, The Independent, the Financial Times, The Conversation and El Pais (Madrid, ESP).


  • –present
    Reader in Physical Cultural Studies, University of Bath


  • 2000 
    University of Otago, PhD