Chivasa, Tafara Gary

Chivasa,  Tafara Gary
Start date:
September 2022
Research Topic:
Sport and character: Reflections on using sport in character education within Wales
Research pathway:
Research Supervisor:
Prof Carwyn Jones , Prof Alun Hardman
Supervising school:
Cardiff School of Sport and Health Sciences,
Primary funding source:
External Sponsor:

Character has many dimensions, one of which is the civic dimension. Someone with a good civic character is thought to act as a productive member of society and able to advance group concerns. There has been recent interest in how sport can be a useful avenue through which one can develop this civic character, specifically, citizens concerned with social justice (Bredemeier and Shields, 2019). Furthermore, there has been recent scholarship that argued that character education in the UK neglects this collective domain and rather focuses on character at the individual level (Jerome & Kisby, 2020).

The current project will build upon these ideas by systematically examining the role that sport can play in building civic character among youths in the Welsh context by asking:
1) How do we define good civic character?
2) How can sport help in civic character development?
3) What role does the coach play in this?
4) What are coaches’ perceptions and competencies in regards to using sport for civic character development?
5) what recommendations relevant to the Welsh context can be given in regards to using sport for civic character development?

The success of the project will rest upon balancing theoretical and applied approaches to research, a balance not easy to find in work related to the philosophy of sport (Elcombe, 2018). The hope is that the recommendations that come out of this study can begin to answer calls for character education research focused on producing “lasting, coherent or cohesive change” (Conroy, 2020).


1) Bredemeier, B. L. & Shields D. L. (2019). Social justice, character education and sport: A position statement. Quest, 71(2), 202-214, DOI:10.1080.00336297.2019.1608270

2) Conroy, J. C. (2020). Chaos or coherence? Future directions for moral education. Journal of Moral Education, 50(1), 1-12, DOI: 10.1080/03057240.2020.1830578.

3) Elcombe, T.L (2018) Sport philosophy inquiry in 3D: A pragmatic response to the (sport) philosophy paradox. Sport, Ethics and Philosophy, 12(3), 317-333, DOI: 10.1080/17511321.2017.1377758

4) Jerome, L., & Kisby, B.(2020). Halting the rise of character education in Britain. British Educational Research Association.