STEVENS: Unified South Korea-North Korea women’s hockey team will help the game

Julie Stevens, Associate Professor of Sport Management and Director of the Centre for Sport Capacity, wrote a piece in The Conversation about the approval of the International Olympic Committee to allow a unified South Korea-North Korea women’s hockey team for the upcoming Games in PyeongChang.

Stevens writes:

Based upon these two perspectives, and research I have conducted over many years, I believe the decision will help the game.

That’s because it offers an opportunity to build a sense of community that has always been central to female hockey.

I explored this theme in an article on community in Canadian women’s hockey in which I noted that as women’s hockey evolved from grassroots to international levels, it experienced a shift from collectivism and collegiality towards individuality and elitism.

I argued such change was detrimental to the female game. But the combined Korean team may provide the context for a return to collective thinking as a key part to building female hockey.

The IOC decision also offers an opportunity to build legitimacy for the female game.

Continue reading the full article on The Conversation here.

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