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Dr Leanne Norman


About Dr Leanne Norman

Leanne is a Professor of Sport and Sociocultural Studies and Director of the Research Centre for Social Justice in Sport and Society within the Carnegie School of Sport. Her research utilises a critical sociological lens to examine sport organisational and coaching cultures to address gender equity and diversity within sport coaching workforces.

Leanne is an internationally recognised researcher for her research and writing within the area of gender equality and issues of diversity related to sports coaching, sports leadership, and organisations. Her work is driven towards improving the participation, performance, and leadership pathways for diverse social groups, principally, different groups of women.

The programme of research Leanne leads within the Carnegie School of Sport is focused on advancing our understanding of gender equity, diversity, and inclusion within sport coaching workforces and how such issues link to organisational processes and cultures. Underpinned by critical social research, the programme of work has significantly contributed to an improvement in national and international understanding of, and approaches to: women's experiences of sport and coaching; the link between sport organisational culture and diversity and inclusion (D&I); the influence of gender on coach-athlete relationships; the intersections of identity for the impact on coaches’ lives and experiences (for example, how gender intersects with race and ethnicity); and sport organisational approaches to building inclusive leadership workforces.

Leanne has written for academic and practitioner textbooks, written educational resources for coaches, and has published widely in academic journals related to sport and social issues.

She has led national and international research projects as well as acted as academic expert and consultant for research funded by international and national sport councils, governing bodies and federations, and charities. Leanne utilises such research as the evidence for impactful outreach activities including leading the delivery of programmes towards supporting women to enhance their experience of sports coaching as a credible and valuable profession, as well as acting consultant for a number of organisations to support them towards creating a diverse leadership and coaching workforce.

Current Teaching

  • BSc Sport Coaching
  • MSc Sport Coaching
  • PhD supervision

Research Interests

Gender equity in sport and coaching; Sport organisational culture and change; Broader equity and diversity (intersectional) issues within sport and coaching; Coaching sociology; Critical feminist sociology; Qualitative research methods; Implementing and promoting inclusive ways of working in sporting governing bodies; Coach education, practices and processes; The coach-athlete relationship; Coaching and power.

Selected Publications

Journal articles (30)

Chapters (6)

  • Rankin-Wright AJ; Norman L (2017) Sport Coaching and the Inclusion of Black Women in the United Kingdom. In: Race, Gender and Sport The Politics of Ethnic 'Other' Girls and Women. : Routledge, pp. .
  • Norman L (2016) Lesbian Coaches and Homophobia. In: LaVoi NM Women in Sports Coaching. : , pp. .
  • Norman L (2016) Lesbian coaches and homophobia. In: Women in Sports Coaching. New York: Routledge, pp. 65-81.
  • Norman L (2014) The Concepts Underpinning Everyday Gendered Homophobia Based Upon the Experiences of Lesbian Coaches. In: Fletcher T; Dashper K Diversity, Equity and Inclusion in Sport and Leisure. London: Routledge, pp. .
  • Norman L (2010) British national female coaches on coaching. In: Spickard-Prettyman S; Lampman B Learning culture through sports: Perspectives on society and organized sports. Lanham: Rowman & Littlefield Publishers, pp. .
  • Norman L (2007) The Coaching Act. In: Denison J Coaching Knowledges: Understanding the Dynamics of Sport. London: A&C Black, pp. .

Conference contributions (66)

  • Norman L (2019) Building inclusive football coaching workforces University of Bolton .
  • Norman L (2019) Understanding the impact of organisational culture in the context of recruiting women coaches Helsinki, Finland .
  • DeHaan D; Norman L; LaVoi N; Knoppers A (2019) A global study of elite women football coaches: A story to tell Lyon, France .
  • Norman L (2019) Improving coach wellbeing through addressing diversity of the (coaching) workforce Derby .
  • Norman L (2019) Achieving gender equality for women in sport London .
  • Norman L (2019) Breaking the cycle: tackling underrepresentation of visible ethnic minorities in coaching London .
  • Norman L; McGoldrick M (2019) Evaluating the changing experiences of women football coaches. St George's Park, UK .
  • Norman L (2019) Improving gender equity and organisational processes in football coaching Leeds, UK .
  • Norman L (2019) Creating organisational cultures that support inclusive workplaces in sport Barcelona, Spain .
  • Norman L (2019) Making gender equality a reality Athens .
  • Norman L (2019) Understanding the impact of organisational cultural climates and the context of women coaches' experiences New York .
  • Didymus FF; Hurst M; Norman L; Rankin-Wright AJ; Clarke N (2018) Work-related stressors, health, and psychological well-being among sports coaches Denver, USA 21/06/2018.
  • Norman L (2018) Improving women's representation as sport coaches London .
  • Norman L (2018) Getting ahead in football coaching London .
  • Rankin-Wright AJ; Hylton K; Norman L (2018) Coaching blind spots: Race and gender equality in sport coaching Leeds, UK .
  • Norman L (2018) Social justice: The role of the sport coach. Minneapolis, US .
  • Norman L; Demers G (2018) Improving gender equality in sport coaching through an organisational cultural lens: An international perspective. Minneapolis .
  • Norman L (2018) Research to support gender equality in sports coaching University of Staffordshire, UK .
  • Norman L (2018) Developing and progressing women coaches in sport organisations: What works? National Institute of Physical Education, Barcelona .
  • Norman L (2017) Recruiting, retaining, and progressing a more diverse coaching workforce. Lincoln, UK .
  • Norman L; Rankin-Wright AJ (2017) Lower and slower: Why recruitment, retention and progression of women coaches is held back by sport organisational culture Bern 05/09/2017.
  • Norman L (2017) Presenting a programme of research on gender equality and coaching: What we are doing to improve diversity Liverpool 31/07/2017.
  • Norman L (2017) Presenting the 2016 Rio Olympics gender and coaching report card: What's changed since London? Liverpool 31/07/2017.
  • Norman L; Didymus F; Rankin-Wright AJ; McGoldrick M (2017) Trying to find balance and boundaries: What it means to be an international female coach University of Vic, Spain .
  • Rankin-Wright AJ; Hylton K; norman L (2017) Coaching blind spots: race and gender equality in sport coaching Prague, Czech Republic 14/06/2017.
  • Norman L (2017) Writing up research for publication: Nine key lessons Liverpool John Moores University 08/06/2017.
  • Norman L (2017) Working towards gender equality in coaching: Presenting a programme of research Open University .
  • Norman L (2017) Why gender equality in coaching can give us the winning edge London .
  • Norman L; Fitzgerald H; Stride; May E; Rankin-Wright (2017) Understanding gender within sport volunteering London, UK .
  • Norman L (2016) Supporting the coaching workforce: Introducing a programme of organisational change for NGBs Birmingham .
  • Didymus FF; Norman L; Hurst M (2016) Career transitions and occupational well-being of women in leadership: The case of women as sports coaches Vienna 06/07/2016.
    View Repository Record
  • Norman L (2016) Gender equality and coaching Stockholm, Sweden .
  • Norman L; Rankin-Wright AJ (2016) Creating organisational cultures to support the progression of women coaches and coach educators Vienna, Austria 06/07/2016.
    View Repository Record
  • Norman L (2016) The need for organisational culture change: The research and practice Birmingham, UK .
  • Norman L (2016) Preparing NGBs for organisational change: A programme of workshops Manchester, UK .
  • Norman L (2016) Understanding the experiences of women sport coaches Cologne, Germany .
  • Norman L (2016) Understanding the impact of coaching on the lives of women Oxford, UK .
  • Norman L (2016) Providing strategies towards the improvement of occupational well-being and women coaches Manchester, UK .
  • Norman L (2015) An introduction to gender mainstreaming in sport. Implementing Gender Mainstreaming in Sport conference Strasbourg, France .
  • Norman L (2015) Inspiring women in sport: Addressing occupational well-being for women coaches Derry, Northern Ireland .
  • Norman L (2015) Occupational well-being and women coaches: An introduction to a 3 stage research cluster Institut Nacional d'Educació Física de Catalunya .
  • Norman L (2015) Occupational well-being and women coaches: Introducing the intervention Institut Nacional d'Educació Física de Catalunya .
  • Norman L (2015) The impact of an "equal opportunities" ideological framework on coaches' knowledge and practice Toronto, Canada .
  • Norman L (2015) Addressing occupational well-being for women coaches Coventry, UK .
  • Norman L (2015) Researching the careers, lives and wellbeing of women coaches Cardiff, UK .
  • Norman L (2014) Understanding and achieving gender equality: For young athletes, coaches and sports organisations Berlin, Germany .
  • Norman L (2014) Gender and coaching at Olympic level Glasgow 27/07/2014.
  • Azurmendi A; Norman L; Cayer I (2014) Psychosocial barriers for women as referees and coaches: Presenting an international perspective Helsinki, Finland .
  • Norman L (2014) The Gender & Coaching Report Card for the London 2012 Olympics Helsinki, Finland .
  • Norman L; Rankin-Wright AJ (2014) Sporting experiences and coaching aspirations among Black and Minority Ethnic (BME) groups Leeds Metropolitan University 21/01/2014.
  • Norman L (2013) Understanding the lives of lesbian coaches within the wider structural practices of their profession Leeds Metropolitan University .
  • Norman L (2013) Understanding the experiences of and challenges for women coaches: A UK context Malmo 31/01/2013.
  • Norman L (2012) Understanding the impact of equity training on coaching practices and relations: A UK perspective New Orleans 07/11/2012.
  • Norman L (2012) Solving your research problems Leeds Metropolitan University .
  • Norman L (2012) Connecting the Everyday Lives and Experiences of Lesbian Coaches to the Structure and Culture of their Profession: A UK perspective . UK:
  • Norman L (2012) What High Performance Women Athletes want from Sport and Coaching . UK:
  • Norman L (2011) Everyday Gendered Homophobia in Sport and Coaching: The experiences of lesbian coaches . USA:
  • Norman L (2011) Meeting the Coaching Needs of High Performance Women Athletes Belfast, UK . UK:
  • Norman L (2010) Meeting the coaching needs of high performance women athletes Cardiff, UK .
  • Norman L (2010) The process of representing the experiences of lesbian coaches: developing a theory of everyday gendered homophobia . UK:
  • Norman L (2010) Developing a theory of everyday gendered homophobia Leeds Metropolitan University .
  • Norman L (2007) Interrogating the absence of women in senior and elite positions of coaching University of Bath .
  • Norman L (2006) The absence of women in senior and elite positions of coaching: Gender as relations of power Vancouver 01/11/2006.
  • Norman L (2006) The process of representing elite women coaches in sport Liverpool John Moores University .
  • Norman L (2006) The importance of a qualitative research approach to the study of women in sport University of Bath .
  • Norman L (2005) How and why have women coaches perpetuated and /or challenged masculine hegemony? University of Bath .

Newspaper or magazine articles (3)

  • Norman L; Rankin-Wright AJ (In press), Exploring the lack of racial diversity within the UK sports coaching profession
  • Norman L; Rankin-Wright AJ (In press), Career transitions and occupational well-being of women in leadership: The case of women as sports coaches.
  • Norman L (2012), How Equality in Sport is undermined by Compulsory Heterosexuality

Other (2)

  • Lara-Bercial S; North J; Till K; Abraham A; Norman L; Ashford M; Mitchell T; Emmonds S (2019), iCoachKids Plus Erasmus+ Project
  • Lara-Bercial S; North J; Till K; Norman L; Abraham A; Ashford M; Petrovic L; Livingstone K; Emmonds S; Mitchell T (2019), iCoachKids Erasmus+ Project

Reports (15)

  • Norman L; Norris L; Didymus F (2019) Understanding the changing experiences of women football coaches: A final report for the English Football Association. Leeds: Leeds Beckett University.
  • Norman L; Norris L; McGoldrick M; Clarke N (2019) Mentee coaches' experiences and key stakeholder perspectives within the FA Elite menteeship programme: A final report for the English Football Association. Leeds: Leeds Beckett University.
  • Norman L; McGoldrick M (2019) Understanding the impact of club cultural climates in the context of recruiting women coaches in the Women's Super League: Phase 2 final report for the English Football Association. Leeds: Leeds Beckett University.
  • DeHaan D; Norman L (2019) What role can men play in facilitating gender equity in Football Governance?. Nyon: UEFA.
  • Rankin-Wright AJ; Norman L (2017) 'Ignite your Coaching' Monitoring and Evaluation Project for British Cycling, Final Report.
  • Kaiseler M; McGoldrick M; Rankin-Wright AJ; Didymus F; Norman L (2017) Evaluation report on "Changing the culture of Coaching" workshop series: A report prepared for Sports Coach UK. Leeds: Sports Coach UK.
  • Norman L; Fitzgerald H; Stride A; May E; Rankin-Wright A; Flintoff A; O'Dwyer L; Barnes L; Stanley R; Gilbert V (2017) Understanding women as sport volunteers. Leeds: Leeds Beckett University.
  • Didymus FF; Norman L; Rankin-Wright AJ (2016) Understanding Occupational Well-being and Women Sports Coaches. Sports Coach UK.
  • Norman L; Didymus FF; Rankin-Wright AJ (2016) Understanding Occupational Well-being and Women Sports Coaches. Sports Coach UK.
  • Hylton K (2016) 'Race', Racism and Football.
    View Repository Record
  • Norman L; Rankin-Wright AJ (2016) Understanding what male and female athletes want from sport coaching - Supporting coaches to be gender-responsive practitioners: A report for Sport Wales. Leeds: Research Institute for Sport, Physical Activity and Leisure, Leeds Beckett University.
  • Norman L; Rankin-Wright AJ (2016) Examining the career pathways and experiences of qualified women coaches and tutors: A report for the English Football Association. Leeds: Research Institute for Sport, Physical Activity and Leisure, Leeds Beckett University..
  • Fletcher T; Piggott D; North J; Hylton K; Glibert S; Norman L (2014) Exploring the barriers to South Asian cricket players' entry and progression into coaching: A report for the England and Wales Cricket Board..
  • Fletcher TE; Piggott D; North J; Hylton K; Gilbert S; Norman L (2014) Exploring the barriers to South Asian cricket players' entry and progression in coaching. England and Wales Cricket Board.
    View Repository Record
  • Norman L; Hylton K; Flintoff A; North J; Rankin-Wright AJ (2014) Exploring Black and Minority Ethnic (BME) sports participants' motivations, enablers and constrains concerning the pathway into coaching. Leeds: Sports Coach UK.
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