Explore our research

  • International Football Institute (IFI)

    IFI slider

The International Football Institute (IFI) links UCLan in research partnership to the National Football Museum, England – the world’s leading museum for association football (soccer). Mutual activities involve research into the social, cultural and historical aspects of football, holding conferences and symposia, making application for funded projects and the supervision of postdoctoral and graduate research students. Further information on the IFI and the National Football Museum.

Expertise and Subject Areas

  • Football and cultural history
  • Football supporter cultures
  • Football and visual culture
  • Football and material culture
  • Football and social issues

Courses and Postgraduate Study

A number of PhD students are connected to the IFI:

Graham Deakin
Louisa Jones
Daniel Nuttall
Maja Kovac
Ray Physick
Justine Reilly
Gayle Rogers
Ffion Thomas


Prof John Hughson
John Hughson is Director of the IFI and Chair in Sport and Cultural Studies. He received a PhD in Sociology from the University of New South Wales (Sydney). John has written a good deal on football fandom, and is of the pioneering generation of immersed ethnographic researchers into football 'hooligan' subcultures. His most recent field-based research into football supporting culture has been conducted in Serbia for a project funded by UEFA. A major strand of John’s current research is on the relationship between sport, art and design and on the representation of sport history within museums. In a related project he is directing a three year study funded by the Arts and Humanities Research Council of Britain on ‘Sport, Museums and Cultural Policy’. John has a senior academic editorial involvement with the journals Sport in Society (Routledge) and Soccer & Society (Routledge), is on the International Advisory Panel of Cultural Sociology (Sage) and on the International Editorial Board of Ethnography (Sage).

Dr Iain Adams
Iain Adams is a Principal Lecturer at UCLan in the School of Sport, Tourism and the Outdoors. He holds degrees from the University of Birmingham, Keele University and the University of North Dakota. An elite junior football player and football coach, Iain has pioneered the teaching of visual culture within sport studies. He is an expert on football on the Western Front, as represented within visual culture and literature. An example of his research is a published paper (with John Hughson) on the significance of the football scene in the painting Gassed (1919) by John Singer Sargent.

Dr Boria Majumdar
Boria Majumdar is a Senior Research Fellow at IFI. Author of the recent bestselling, Sellotape Legacy: Delhi and the Commonwealth Games, Harper Collins, 2010, much of his recent work concerns the impact of mega events on societies across the world. He is also the Series Editor of the Routledge Series, Sport in the Global society: Contemporary Perspectives and Executive Academic Editor of the Journals, Sport in society and Soccer and Society. A fellow of the International Olympic Museum, Lausanne, he was nominated as Young Global Leader by the World Economic Forum in 2009 and is currently in India researching the impact of the forthcoming 2011 Cricket World Cup and the 4th season of the IPL.

Daniel Nuttall
Danny has been a full-time member of staff at UCLan since 2008 and has predominantly contributed to the socio-cultural modules within SSTO. His research interests focus on identity and community formation in football.

Louisa Jones
Louisa is a Lecturer in Hospitality, Tourism, Sport and Leisure Management, and is the Course Leader for BA (Hons) Top Up suite of programmes. Prior to her appointment, she was involved in teaching and curriculum development at a Turkish University. She has subsequently been a mentor to World Bank fellows visiting the UK from Turkey. She also has a particular interest, derived from her MSc in Business Administration (Information Technology), in the application and role of Information Technology in Hospitality, and was involved in research assessing software suitability for Sports Facilities.

Jessica Macbeth
Jess joined the University as a Research Fellow in 2004 and became a Lecturer in 2006. Prior to joining UCLan she gained a BA(Hons) in Economics with Sports Studies at Stirling University, where she remained to complete her PhD.

IFI / Soccer & Society

The International Football Institute is the named affiliated research centre with Soccer & Society, the only refereed international academic journal dedicated to scholarship on association football. This working relationship has led to IFI involvement in themed conferences with resultant publication of special issues of Soccer & Society.

IFI Logo

The IFI Logo features Ball on Wheels (Walker Gallery, Liverpool) by the British surrealist painter Patrick Hughes. We are grateful to Patrick for supplying and allowing us to use this image of his work. Further information about Patrick can be found on his website.

Additional Information

For more information on the International Football Institute, contact:

Professor John Hughson
Director, International Football Institute
+44 (0) 1772 89 5891

Related Research Groups

An honorary International Board of Scholars is being developed to ensure that the International Football Institute is able to draw on academic expertise pertaining to football around the globe. Current members of the board are:

  • Kathryn Woodward – The Open University
  • Peter Alegi – University of Michigan
  • Kausik Bandyopadhyay – West Bengal State University
  • Richard Giulianotti – Loughborough University
  • Ramon Spaaij – Latrobe University
  • Patrizia Zagnoli – University of Florence
  • Lev Kreft – University of Ljubljana
  • Christos Kassimeris – European University Cyprus
  • Emma Poulton – University of Durham
  • Salomé Marivoet - Universidade de Coimbra
  • Paul Willis – Princeton University
  • Matthew Taylor – De Montfort University