Tip of the iceberg? An international investigation of fraud in community sport

Lisa A. Kihl, Katie E. Misener, Graham Cuskelly, Pamela Wicker

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

This study examines the nature and incidences of occupational fraud in community sport organisations (CSOs) as reported in media coverage from Australia, Canada, Germany, and the United States from 2008−2018. Using the fraud diamond framework, the main indicators for fraud occurring in CSO's included: incentive (i.e., personal financial struggles, supporting lavish lifestyles, addictions, and mental health issues); opportunity (i.e., access to organisational accounts, insufficient financial control mechanisms, vacancy in key positions, singular role responsibilities, and perceived trustworthiness of club leaders), rationalisation (i.e., denial of responsibility, good intentions, and self-justification), and capability (i.e., educated professionals and learned advantage). The findings showed that individuals who committed various forms of occupational fraud typically held the trusted volunteer positions of treasurer or president. The research offers a new understanding of the global nature of fraud and its risk indicators within the CSO context, and begins to identify how CSOs might be susceptible to fraud, thereby articulating a future research agenda to explore fraud vulnerability in CSOs. In practice, this study offers important insights for anti-fraud strategies and training in the community sport sector.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalSport Management Review
DOIs
StateAccepted/In press - 2020

Keywords

  • Corruption
  • Embezzlement
  • Fraud
  • Governance
  • Sport club
  • Theft
  • Volunteers

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