Title: Understanding the income determinants of German elite athletes in non-professionalised sports

Authors: Pamela Wicker; Christoph Breuer; Tassilo Von Hanau

Addresses: Department of Tourism, Leisure, Hotel and Sport Management, Nathan Campus, Griffith University, 170 Kessels Road, Nathan Queensland 4111, Australia; Institute of Sport Economics and Sport Management, German Sport University Cologne, Cologne, Germany. ' Institute of Sport Economics and Sport Management, German Sport University Cologne, Cologne, Germany. ' Institute of Sport Economics and Sport Management, German Sport University Cologne, Cologne, Germany

Abstract: Previous research has focused on the salaries of athletes and players in professionalised sports. Currently, there is a lack of evidence regarding the income of elite athletes in non-professionalised sports who represent their home country in various competitions (e.g., during the Olympics). For this paper, a theoretical model has been developed to explain the income of elite athletes as a function of individual factors and consumption capital of spectators generated through media exposure of the sport. The model is tested using data from a nationwide survey of elite athletes in Germany who are supported by the German Sports Aid Foundation (n = 1,133). The results show that being an Olympic champion, age, age-squared, being employed, attending school, and the media exposure of the sport have a significant impact on the income of elite athletes in non-professionalised sports.

Keywords: consumption capital; labour market; media exposure; Olympic athletes; top-performance athletes; athlete income; elite athletes; non-professionalised sports; sport management; Germany; income determinants; modelling.

DOI: 10.1504/IJSMM.2012.045486

International Journal of Sport Management and Marketing, 2012 Vol.11 No.1/2, pp.26 - 43

Received: 09 Apr 2011
Accepted: 10 Aug 2011

Published online: 19 Feb 2012 *

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