Speakers: Dr Laura Purdy, Dr Rutenis Paulauskas, and Dr Melanie Lang
Date: Tuesday 8 November 2023
Time: 12.00 – 12.45pm (GMT)
Venue: Online event

To register to attend, email Dr Melanie Lang on [email protected] with the date/ title of the session. A secure Teams link will be sent at least 2 working days before the seminar.


11.55Session opens online for joining – please turn off your microphone when joining
Dr Melanie Lang, Assistant Director of the Centre for Child Protection and Safeguarding in Sport
12.05Opening from the Institute for Social Responsibility (ISR)
Professor Jo Crotty, Director of the Institute for Social Responsibility, which sponsored the project
12.10(Re)imagining sport in Lithuania: Young people’s promotion of safe sporting spaces
Dr Laura Purdy and Dr Rutenis Paulauskas

Seminar abstract

Sports organisations have a legal and moral duty of care to deliver a safe sports environment, promote positive sport practices, and mitigate against and manage potential harm to sports participants of all ages. However, little is known about how athletes themselves understand athlete welfare. This presentation focuses on a recent project that encouraged Lithuanian athletes’/young peoples’ active involvement in promoting positive sport environments and protect themselves (and others) from harmful sport practices. 17 university student-athletes from sport-related degrees in Lithuania took part in one week of workshops about safe sport and created and disseminated related campaigns to sports clubs in their nation. An empirical study running alongside the project explored their understandings of safe sport and the welfare issues relevant to them. This presentation reveals the findings of the project and provides recommendations for future work in the area.

The project was funded by an Institute for Social Responsibility Award. The speakers would like to thank staff at the Institute for Social Responsibility for supporting the project.

Speaker biographies

Dr Laura Purdy, Edge Hill University and Vytautas Magnus University, UK

Laura is a member of the Centre for Child Protection and Safeguarding in Sport (Edge Hill University) and the Institute of Educational Research (Vytautas Magnus University). Her scholarly activity focuses on the careers and lives of athletes and coaches in top-level sport with recent projects examining their welfare, representation and advocacy.

Dr Rutenis Paulauskas, Vytautas Magnus University, Lithuania

Rutenis is a member of the Institute of Educational Research (Vytautas Magnus University). His central areas of research pertain to coaching high performance basketball players, teaching sport concepts and skills, and the physical fitness of youth and adolescents.

Dr Melanie Lang, Edge Hill University, UK
Melanie is Reader in Child Protection and Safeguarding in Sport at Edge Hill University. Her teaching and research focus on children’s rights in sport, especially participation rights (‘voice’), and the development and evaluation of policy and prevention initiatives on child abuse and interpersonal violence against athletes.