Hag, Sjors van 't
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This research uses institutional innovation theory and a sociomaterial angle to study legitimacy development of the video referee systems in tennis, field hockey and football as a consequence of different interactions between actor groups and the video referee taking place. Furthermore, the role of sports associations in legitimising the video referee in the sports community is studied by making use of legitimisation strategy theory. Based on the analysis of game regulations and the combination of qualitative interview input and the quantification of media sentiments, it was possible to determine whether an interaction would cause a negative or positive sentiment in the sports community. It was found that legitimacy increases when user actor groups are involved both in-game and during the innovation trajectory. Moreover, legitimacy appeared to increase when the complexity of the system was diminished in order to make the implementation of the video referee within the existing regulations easier. Also, centralised governance by the international sports association seemed to increase legitimacy. With regard to the role of sports associations, framing the situation without the video referee implemented appeared to be a preliminary condition before starting the innovation trajectory. Collaboration as a strategy was considered vital, due to a significant decrease in legitimacy when not deployed and a significant increase when deployed. Limitations and (practical) recommendations are mentioned in the discussion, the most important being the different lengths (and maturities) of the innovation trajectories. This makes future reproduction of this research necessary.