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Despite the popularity of innovation adoption and diffusion research in a variety of disciplines, there has been little knowledge of innovation adoption and diffusion in the area of sport management. This study attempted to link the Diffusion of Innovation Theory to a boom in the MLB stadium construction observed since Baltimore's Oriole Park at Camden Yards. This stadium was constructed in 1992 and represents the start of the current era of baseball stadium construction. The proposed study attempted to identify and empirically test the determinants influencing the construction of MLB stadiums from both teams' and city governments' perspectives. In other words, what factors drive both a team and city government to adopt stadium construction? It was intended to justify the idea of a diffusion effect; that is, to show that MLB teams and city governments emulate other teams' and cities' construction of new stadiums to achieve some of the advantages observed from others' constructions. Given the longitudinal nature of the stadium construction process, event history analysis (EHA) was performed to test the significance of the determinant factors influencing the adoption of stadium construction from both teams' and city governments' perspectives. Overall, considering the observed time period (22 years) and the number of MLB teams and their cities adopting construction of a new stadium, the proposed model supported most hypotheses with a high Pseudo R² value of 0.48. The empirical results provided practical implications to both sport franchise owners and city officials considering the construction of a new stadium by providing useful information about several ways to increase the likelihood of stadium construction adoption. The current study contributed to the sport management literature by providing an initial effort to conceptually develop and then empirically test a model of innovation adoption and diffusion in the context of sport. Furthermore, the proposed model also provided numerous opportunities for sport scholars to continue advancing our knowledge of innovation adoption and diffusion in sport.
A Dissertation submitted to the Department of Sport Management in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree of Doctor of Philosophy.
Includes bibliographical references.
Michael Mondello, Professor Directing Dissertation; Frances Stokes Berry, University Representative; Yu Kyoum Kim, Committee Member; Pamela Perrewé, Committee Member.
Florida State University
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