Studentship Title: Self-funded PhD on Psychological Safety, Fear of Failure, and Resilience
in a National Football Organisation
Organisation: Nottingham Trent University (in collaboration with the Football Association)
Location: Nottingham (and St George’s Park, Burton upon Trent)
Closing Date: Friday 2 November 2018 (for January 2019 start date)
Interview Date: November/December 2018
Start Date: January 2019
Contract Type: Full-time
Bursary: £1,500 (to cover project costs including travel expenses)
Project title: Psychological Safety, Fear of Failure, and Resilience in a National Football Organisation
Background/Context: In recent years, professional English football players and coaches have openly discussed in the media about the fear of failure. From a research perspective, a high fear of failure has been associated with avoidance goals (Conroy & Elliot, 2004), ineffective coping strategies (e.g., Sagar et al., 2010), and impaired interpersonal behaviour and sporting performance (e.g., Sagar et al., 2009). This fear of failure and fear narrative may be influenced by how psychologically safe an environment is created within a team and/or organisation. Psychological safety, which refers to a belief that one is able to express his or her self “without fear of negative consequences to self-image, status or career” (Khan, 1990, p. 708) has been found to be an important enabler of team and organisational performance in work settings (e.g., Baer & Frese, 2003; Carmeli & Gittell, 2009; Edmondson, 1999). In a sport context, psychological safety has been associated with team resilience (e.g., Morgan, Fletcher, & Sarkar, 2013, 2015, 2017). However, the link between psychological safety, fear of failure, and resilience in a professional sport context has yet to be investigated.
Project Description: The overall purpose of this PhD will be to investigate psychological safety, fear of failure, and resilience in a national football organisation with a view to ultimately enhancing sport performance and organisational culture. Specifically, the PhD will investigate fear of failure, the role of the fear narrative (from a psychosocial perspective) on resilience, and the role of language in creating perceptions of resilience and fearlessness in individuals, teams, and organisations, and how this can all be influenced by psychological safety. The project will utilise both qualitative and quantitative approaches so knowledge and experience with both types of methods will be desirable.
Entry Criteria: UK 1st Class / 2.1 Bachelor’s degree (or UK equivalent according to NARIC) (essential) in Sport and Exercise Science, Psychology, or related discipline. Strong UK Master’s degree (or UK equivalent according to NARIC) (desirable) in Sport and Exercise Psychology, or related discipline.
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Contact Details: For informal discussions about the PhD, please contact Dr Mustafa Sarkar (email@example.com) or Dr Ian Mitchell (firstname.lastname@example.org).
Social Media Twitter Handle: Dr Mustafa Sarkar (@MusSarkar); Dr Ian Mitchell (@ianmitch9)