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Resistance to Technological Innovation in Elite Sport

Abstract : In 1998, the French Canoe and Kayak Federation embarked on the creation of a new kayak. However, there was concern it would not succeed in its venture due to `social resistance'. This article aims therefore to reveal the social characteristics of those showing opposition to technological innovation, as well as those who are calling for it, and to determine the reasons behind reticence. A questionnaire was handed out to elite athletes, and interviews conducted with national coaches. The results show that, contrary to preliminary hypotheses, all athletes (including those of flat water racing) generally view such a project in a favourable light. The coaches express different types of `resistance' — a term which should be used with caution, as it suggests legitimacy and faith in progress — which have less to do with the social position of the actors than with criticism of past and present policies of the Federation.
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Submitted on : Friday, December 18, 2020 - 3:12:20 PM
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Patrick Trabal. Resistance to Technological Innovation in Elite Sport. International Review for the Sociology of Sport, SAGE Publications, 2008, 43 (3), pp.313-330. ⟨10.1177/1012690208098255⟩. ⟨hal-01471540⟩



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