My professional career began in sport science, the focus of my undergraduate degree. When people inquire into my expertise, one of the reasons that I struggle to answer is that I had a very liberal education at university. I studied psychology, physiology, anatomy, philosophy, sociology, leisure, biomechanics and more.
While I don’t think having an undergraduate degree in any area defines one’s character or expertise, this experience did sensitize me to different methodological approaches to gaining closer approximations to truth.
I consider myself a scientist as much as I am a philosopher, a cultural critic, an activist, an artist and a photographer. All of these aspects of who I am have been shaped by what I think we ought to be doing in order to understand the world.
My research began in sport and I remain interested in this area to some degree, but I’ve been to 6 Olympic Games and seen not more than 4 events. I guess you could say that my studies of sport have led me to other areas of inquiry where sports feature less, but I would say that one cannot understand the meaning, value and importance of sport, without looking beyond it.
The Olympic Games is perhaps the most eloquent articulation of this, which is why my work on doping has been complemented by inquiries into peace processes, global diplomacy, cultural transformations, all of which happen around the sports industries. However, I am still passionate about the debate on ethics and sport performance, which remains an ongoing thread within my published research and public life.