Doctor Jess Richards

Doctor Jess Richards

Senior Lecturer,
Hospitality, Marketing & Sport


Jessica is currently a senior lecturer in Sport Management in the School of Business at Western Sydney University. Her research broadly focuses on sport management, sport marketing, event management and measuring the social impact of sport for all members of the community. She is widely published in high quality research journals and has produced commissioned industry reports for Tennis Australia, Rugby Union Australia, various National Rugby League clubs and various Australian Football League clubs. Through her work she aims to contribute to our understanding of sport consumers, and provide sport organisations opportunities to grow and sustain their current fan base with new and innovate strategies. Her research also aims to explore the benefit of engaging with sport for all members of the community, with a focus particularly on advancing the visibility of women’s sport. She has a regular fortnightly spot on ABC Newcastle "The Drive" with Kia Handley and her research is widely circulated through various media channels such as CHOICE Magazine, ABC News, Sydney Morning Herald and The Conversation.      

Through no choice of her own she is a senselessly loyal St George Dragons fan. 

Jessica was awarded her doctorate by the University of Sydney on May 4th 2017 for a study that captured the match-day experience of Everton FC fans. 

This information has been contributed by Doctor Richards.


  • PhD University of Sydney
  • BA(Hons) University of Sydney

Professional Memberships

  • Sport Management Association of Australia and New Zealand (2019 - 2022)
  • Higher Education Academy (2022 - 2027)
  • The Australian Sociological Association (2012 - 2021)


  • Excellence in Teaching Award 2018-10-04
  • Deans Citation for Excellence in Teaching Tutorials 2016-09-01
  • Australian Post-Graduate Award 2012-03-01
  • Golden Key Society Award 2010-11-01
  • Researcher Development ECR Fellowship 2020-10-16


  • Sports Management
  • Sports Marketing
  • Sports Sociology
  • Stadium and Fan Experience

Organisational Unit (School / Division)

  • Hospitality, Marketing & Sport


  • School of Business Research Committee
  • The Australian Sociological Association Sport Thematic Group
  • Western Sydney Academy of Sport
  • Journal of the Sociology of Leisure


Phone: (02) 9685 9294
Location: 1.8.1

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Previous Teaching Areas

  • BUSM2037 Sport Entertainment, 2022
  • BUSM3008 Developing Sport Professionals, 2022
  • BUSM3053 Our Sporting Future, 2022
  • BUSM3068 Sport and Society, 2022
  • SPRT3014 Sport Management Applied Project, 2022



  • Richards, J. (2023), 'Sports Marketing: An Australian Perspective', : Western Sydney University .

Chapters in Books

  • Parry, K. and Richards, J. (2022), 'Football fans and food : feeding the desire', Routledge Handbook of Sport Fans and Fandom, Routledge 9780367358310.
  • Richards, J., Parry, K. and Spanjaard, D. (2022), 'Studying sports fans through ethnographic methods : walk a mile in their shoes', Routledge Handbook of Sport Fans and Fandom, Routledge 9780367358310.
  • Parry, K., Richards, J., Batey, J. and Khan, A. (2021), 'Walking the walk : gender-bland sexism, the fan experience and perceptions of value in professional women's cricket', The Professionalisation of Women's Sport: Issues and Debates, Emerald Publishing 9781800431973.
  • Parry, K., George, E., Richards, J. and Stevens, A. (2020), 'Watching football as medicine : promoting health at the football stadium', Football as Medicine: Prescribing Football For Global Health Promotion, Routledge 9780367248888.
  • Parry, K., Richards, J. and McAuliffe, C. (2020), 'Real-time, real world learning : capitalising on mobile technology', Applied Pedagogies for Higher Education: Real World Learning and Innovation Across the Curriculum, Palgrave Macmillan 9783030469504.
  • Richards, J. (2013), ''Oh the places you'll go' : a comparative study of sports spectatorship in England and Australia', Football and Communities Across Codes, Inter-Disciplinary Press 9781848882416.

Journal Articles

  • Turner, M., Richards, J. and Lawrence, S. (2023), '[In Press] Leisure and fan activism : exploring new cases and contexts across men's and women's professional sport', International Journal of the Sociology of Leisure, .
  • Richards, J., Parry, K. and Gill, F. (2022), '"The guys love it when chicks ask for help" : an exploration of female rugby league fans', Sport in Society, vol 25, no 5 , pp 927 - 944.
  • Storr, R. and Richards, J. (2022), '[In Press] 'The tennis club is my safe space' : assessing the positive impact of playing tennis on LGBT+ people in Australia', Sport, Education and Society, .
  • Richards, J., Spanjaard, D., O'Shea, M. and Garlin, F. (2022), 'The changing carnival : reimagining and recreating the match-day experience in multi-purpose stadiums', Journal of Sport and Tourism, vol 26, no 3 , pp 269 - 284.
  • Richards, J., O'Shea, M., Spanjaard, D. and Garlin, F. (2021), ''You can rent it for a while, but it is our house' : sports fans' experience of returning 'home' to a new multipurpose stadium', International Review for the Sociology of Sport, vol 56, no 7 , pp 981 - 996.
  • Richards, J. and Parry, K. (2020), 'Beers and blurred boundaries : the spatial and gendered organisation of pre-match venues for English football fans', International Review for the Sociology of Sport, vol 55, no 6 , pp 647 - 663.
  • Richards, J. (2019), 'Passing and moving : negotiating fieldwork roles in football fandom research', Journal of Organizational Ethnography, vol 8, no 2 , pp 146 - 158.
  • Richards, J. (2015), ''Which player do you fancy then?' : locating the female ethnographer in the field of the sociology of sport', Soccer and Society, vol 16, no 2-3 , pp 393 - 404.
  • Hamilton, R. and Richards, J. (2010), 'Odds and evens : two studies in historiography', Teaching History, vol 44, no 1 , pp 11 - 15.

Conference Papers

  • Richards, J. and Spanjaard, D. (2023), 'It's more than just internships, placements, and guest lecturers : partnership pedagogy in practice', University of Sydney Business School Learning & Teaching Forum, Darlington, N.S.W..
  • Richards, J. and Spanjaard, D. (2023), 'Beyond the try line : understanding the factors that fuel fan commitment for National Rugby League Women's premiership (NRLW)', Sport Management Association of Australia and New Zealand. Conference, Canberra, A.C.T..
  • Spanjaard, D. and Richards, J. (2023), 'Enhancing experiential learning in sport management : exploring the benefits of partnership pedagogy', Sport Management Association of Australia and New Zealand. Conference, Canberra, A.C.T..
  • Spanjaard, D., Freeman, L. and Richards, J. (2022), 'Moving away from the "lived experience" and towards the "living experience" : gathering insights for consumer culture theory', Australian & New Zealand Marketing Academy. Conference, Perth, W.A..
  • Pope, S. and Richards, J. (2022), 'Women Researchers in a 'Man's World' : advancing a new theoretical tool through the gendered challenges of undertaking research in the masculine space of men's football', International Society of Qualitative Research in Sport and Exercise. Conference, Durham, England.
  • Richards, J., O'Shea, M., Garlin, F., Spanjaard, D. and Hall, T. (2019), 'Kicking goals for Western Sydney : fan engagement and experience at Bankwest Stadium', Sport Management Association of Australia and New Zealand. Conference, Christchurch, N.Z..
  • Parry, K., Khan, A. and Richards, J. (2018), 'Paying the price : ticket purchasing at sports events', Sport Management Association of Australia and New Zealand. Conference, Adelaide, S.A..

Other Publications

  • 2021, 'Sydney Sixers: Evaluating the Social Impact of LGBT+ Diversity and Inclusion Work', Report
  • 2020, 'From Barriers to Benefits: Investment in Women's Sport', Report
  • 2020, 'Game On: LGBT+ Inclusion in Australian Tennis', Report
  • 2019, 'Back to #PARRAdise: Preliminary Match-day Insights from Bankwest Stadium', Report
  • 2019, 'Back to #PARRAdise: Match-day Insights from Bankwest Stadium', Report
  • 2018, '#smashemsixers: A Report on the Matchday Presentation of Sydney Sixers Women's Big Bash League Games', Report
  • 2018, 'Multicultural Settlement Program Evaluation', Report

Current Projects

Title: Active Rugby Hubs: Evaluating the impact of an Australian Rugby program
  • Rugby Australia Ltd
Western Researchers: Emma George, Jess Richards, Justin Guagliano and Aymen El Masri
Years: 2020-08-17 - 2024-03-31
ID: P00026752

Previous Projects

Title: LGBT inclusion in Australian Tennis
  • Tennis Australia Ltd
Western Researchers: Ryan Storr and Jess Richards
Years: 2019-06-25 - 2020-07-25
ID: P00025951
Title: Evaluation of Football Federation of Australia Multicultural Settlement Program
  • Football Federation Australia Limited
Western Researchers: Keith Parry and Jess Richards
Years: 2018-03-14 - 2019-03-29
ID: P00024985
Title: Kicking Goals for Western Sydney: Fan Engagement and Experience at Bankwest Stadium
  • Parramatta National Rugby League Club Limited
Western Researchers: Jess Richards, Tim Hall, Michelle O'Shea and Francine Garlin
Years: 2019-06-20 - 2022-12-31
ID: P00025932


Previous Supervision

Thesis Title: A content analysis of Twitter attitudes on women's Australian and North American sports
Field of Research: Gender Specific Studies


Title: Fans are finding out just how disappointing merchandise for women's football is
Description: Research cited in Yahoo News
Title: How the sports world is still stacked against top women
Description: Research cited in Yahoo News
Title: Pride celebrations must be engaged with but not simply to make a sport look progressive
Description: Research cited in the Guardian
Title: Women's football: record crowds and soaring popularity ??? here's how to keep it this way
Description: Research cited in Yahoo News
Title: Women's sport is on the way up ??? but more needs to be done to secure its future
Description: Research cited in Yahoo News
Title: f you build it, they will buy it: Womens soccer fans desire more team apparel
Description: Article in Sport Business Journal
Title: Born from the ashes: The Eels came of age on the night of their first premiership
Description: Interviewed for the Sydney Morning Herald
Title: The booming finances and changing faces of rugby league???s heartland
Description: Interviewed for the Sydney Morning Herald
Title: How food and drink options at the footy are changing
Description: Interviewed for the Herald Sun
Title: A fascinating experiment in how sexism, and racism, affects the way we watch sport
Description: Research Cited in the Age
Title: Fears ticket scalping will surge post-lockdown as laws fail to rein in Viagogo
Description: Interviewed for CHOICE Magazine
Title: That's My Team: The Science of Fan Zones
Description: Interviewed for Canvas8
Title: Sport isn't just about the players. Coronavirus has thrown out fans' seasons too
Description: Interviewed for ABC News
Title: What happens when we can't get our fix of sport?
Description: Interviewed for Sydney Morning Herald
Title: Stadiums are emptying out globally. So why have Australian sports been so slow to act?
Description: Article in The Conversation
Title: Aussie, Aussie, Aussie, Oi,Oi,Oi: Why Do We Love Sport So Much?
Description: Scone Literary Festival
Title: Why are we so sport mad?
Description: Radio Interview
Title: Streaming in your loungeroom or live at the game? How do you watch live sport
Description: Radio Interview
Title: Graduate Beware Do Not Fall For That Unpaid Internship
Description: Article in The Conversation
Title: Moving the A-League to the winter would improve the play, but will it attract the fans?
Description: Article in The Conversation
Title: The changing face of the Parramatta Eels fan base
Description: Quoted in Sydney Morning Herald
Title: INSIDE (Episode 9) by Ben Taylor
Description: Podcast
Title: Rugby league may finally have reached its tipping point on player behaviour and violence
Description: Article in The Conversation
Title: Demolition of Allianz Stadium Green Light
Description: Radio Interview
Title: Australians love their sport, but investing in new venues is another matter
Description: Article in The Conversation
Title: Note to governments: sports stadiums should benefit everyone, not just fans
Description: Article in The Conversation
Title: The AFLW found instant success, but challenges remain for its long-term sustainability
Description: Article in The Conversation

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