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Professor Wray Vamplew

Sports History

University of Stirling



Wray Vamplew is Emeritus Professor of Sports History at the University of Stirling, UK, Visiting Research Professor in Exercise and Sport Science at Manchester Metropolitan University, UK, and Global Professorial Fellow at the University of Edinburgh Academy of Sport, UK. Previously he has been Dean of the Faculty of Social Sciences and Pro-Vice-Chancellor at the Flinders University of South Australia and Head of the School of Arts and Humanities at De Montfort University, UK.

He founded the International Centre for Sports History and Culture at De Montfort University in 1996 and developed a FIFA-sponsored Master’s degree involving universities in Switzerland and Italy. As Director of Research at the University of Stirling he led Sports Studies to first place in Scotland and fifth in the UK in the 2008 Research Assessment Exercise.

Author or editor of 37 books, he has also published 140 articles and book chapters as well as over 100 other publications. He was the inaugural winner of the North American Society for Sport History book prize for Pay Up and Play the Game in 1988. This book featured in a special article in the Journal of Sport History in 2014 assessing its influence on sport history. His work on sports violence won the Australian Sports Commission’s National Sport Science Education Award in 1992.

A special issue of Sport in History, the journal of the British Society of Sports History, was published in Wray's honour in 2009. An article of his in that journal was listed as one of the most significant of the past 30 years; two articles in the International Journal of the History of Sport were rated the best in their year; and in 2016 a special issue of Sport in Society was commissioned for his work.

In 2011 he was named the ISHPES Award winner for his contribution to sport history and he was also awarded a BSSH Fellowship. Currently he is writing a global history of sport for Reaktion Press and is a General Editor of Bloomsbury’s six-volume Cultural History of Sport.

In 2006, he was appointed Editor of the Journal of Sport History, the first non-American to hold the position, and he became Managing Editor of the International Journal of the History of Sport in 2010, gaining citation status for both journals. In 2016 he gained the NASSH Service Award. Currently he is Special Projects Editor for the International Journal of the History of Sport.