Manchester Metropolitan University

LSA2020 has now been canceled due to COVID-19.

Please see the Leisure Studies Association website for more details.

Leisure Studies Association Annual Conference 2020
Leisure Pasts, Presents and Futures

Manchester Metropolitan University
7-9 July 2020, Birley Campus



Online registration is now open. The deadline for registration is 23rd June 2020. 

Register Now

Call For Abstracts

The Leisure Studies Association is delighted to open the first call for abstracts for its annual conference in 2020.

The conference offers the opportunity to explore leisure from a range of disciplinary perspectives, and to learn from industry and policy practitioners.

In 2020, its core theme is leisure pasts, presents and futures. Presenters and delegates are thus invited to consider:

The broad sub-themes for 2020 are:

Preliminary call for abstracts

We welcome submissions that address the core themes of the conference: leisure pasts, presents and futures, and are open to those that address any other area of leisure research, teaching and practice.

Abstracts of up to 300 words may be submitted for individual presentations. For panels, please provide a 100 word abstract for the panel overview, an indication of the format and a list of panel members with 100 word summaries for each if applicable.

Individual submissions would ordinarily comprise a 20 minute presentation followed by 10 minutes for questions.

Panels would ordinarily be 90 minutes long, and should share thematic or methodological synergies. This may take the format of three individual presentations, each of 20 minutes followed by 10 minutes of questions, or a more dialogic format between presenters. We actively encourage you to work with other potential presenters in this way: it should facilitate greater collaboration and deeper debate. If you would like to float your ideas with us ahead of submitting, we would be delighted to hear from you.

Abstracts and panel submissions should be submitted to by 20th March 2020.

The LSA actively encourages participation from postgraduate students and ECRs. Student bursaries will be available from the LSA to eligible student members on application (details will follow).

Download Call For Papers (Adobe Acrobat)


The below prices include the Tuesday evening reception and the Wednesday evening social event plus all refreshments during the day.

1. Full LSA Member Early Bird


2. Full LSA Member 


3. Full non-member + LSA membership Early Bird


4. Full non-member + LSA membership


5. Student/non-affiliated/retired LSA Member Early Bird/MMU staff


6. Student/non-affiliated/retired LSA Member


7. Student/non-affiliated/retired Non-Member + LSA Membership Early Bird


8. Student/non-affiliated/retired Non-Member + LSA Membership


9. Day Rate


10. Student/non-affiliated/retired Day Rate



Please note: If you came to the LSA2019 conference and paid for membership as part of your conference fee please select option 3 or 4 to ensure your membership is renewed for 2020/2021.

If you joined the LSA via the website/invoice then please select option 1 or 2.

Bursaries to support student travel will be available once abstracts are accepted and fees paid.

LSA Bursary Award Scheme

The LSA Bursary Award Scheme has been implemented to enable undergraduate and graduate student participation at the LSA’s annual conference. The scheme awards £100 each to a pre-designated number of students who have submitted a proposal through the regular procedure and have been accepted onto the annual summer conference programme. 

To apply, send an overview of the paper (possibly the accepted abstract), details on how attendance at the conference will benefit you and your studies, and an indication of what the bursary funds would be spent on. Please limit to one page max. All applications should be sent to LSA Chair, Dr Thomas Fletcher by June 1, 2020.



LSA Keynotes
Dr Larissa Davies

Sheffield Hallam University

Dr Larissa Davies is a Reader in Sport Management at Sheffield Hallam University.  She is an interdisciplinary researcher whose work draws upon knowledge and methods from sport management, economics and geography.  Larissa’s research focuses on the economic and social impact of sport and leisure.  She specialises in measuring and valuing the ‘non-market’ impacts of sport and physical activity on society.  Larissa’s research is positioned at the interface between academia and practice.  Her work contributes to methodological debates around the measurement of sport and leisure, and her evidence-based research also informs policy and practice in the sector.  Larissa has worked extensively with a range of sport and leisure organisations in the UK, including central and local government, non-departmental public bodies, charities, National Governing Bodies and commercial sports organisations.  She is also part of an international collaboration investigating the social benefits of outdoor sport to society.  Her keynote will focus on the social impact of sport and physical activity and explore the challenges of assigning monetary values to impacts which are often difficult to measure.

Rasul Mowatt LSA Keynotes

Professor Rasul Mowatt

Indiana University

Rasul Mowatt is Professor in the Departments of American Studies in the College of Arts + Sciences and Recreation, Park, and Tourism Studies in the School of Public Health – Bloomington at Indiana University; Affiliate Faculty in the Center for Research on Race and Ethnicity in Society, Ostrom Workshop, and Department of African American and African Diaspora Studies. His prior work included serving as a City Commissioner for the Champaign Human Relations Commission; Program Director for the American Friends Service Committee; Field Coordinator for the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People; President for the Sunrise Rotary Club of Champaign-Urbana; and, Community Programs Manager for the Champaign Park District. It was this line of work that brought him to completing both his Master of Science degree in Park and Natural Resource Management at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, where he previously completed a Bachelor of Arts in History (North and East African, Early American History). He would continue at the University Illinois for a PhD in Leisure Behavior directly following his M.S.. The combination of these studies informed his dissertation work on looking at the nature and relationship between leisure, natural/built environment, and Race via lynching history and photography. His primary areas of research and teaching are associated with: social justice, leisure studies, cultural studies, and critical pedagogy. Professor Mowatt has presented his work in more than ten countries, and has published in various leisure related publications and in other fields. He is an associate editor of Leisure Sciences and the Journal of Leisure Research, current editor for Recreation, Park, and Tourism in Public Health, and a former associate editor for Schole. He is the former Chair of his Department, served as a Co-Chair for the National Recreation and Park Association Leisure Research Symposium and The Academy’s inaugural Institute/Conference. In February of 2020, he will be assuming the role and duties of President of The Academy of Leisure Sciences.

Dr Beate Peter
LSA Keynotes

Dr Beate Peter

Manchester Metropolitan University

Dr Beate Peter is a member of the Research Centre for Applied Social Sciences and founding member of Music and Sonic Studies (MASS) at Manchester Metropolitan University, UK. Since her PhD, which discussed clubbing and the unconscious, she has remained interested in both electronic music and dance as an immersive experience. Her publications discuss a variety of topics in relation to electronic music and associated cultures. Over the past three years, she has focussed on rave culture in the UK, exploring aspects of ageing, enduring involvement, and leisure lifestyles. 

Diane Wehrle
LSA Keynotes

Diane Wehrle


Diane and is regarded as one of the leading experts on retail and retail destinations, with an unparalleled knowledge and expertise in understanding current and emerging retail issues and consumer trends. Diane is a regular commentator on the performance of retail for national broadcast and print media, appearing regularly on BBC and Sky News and her opinion is often quoted in the UK’s national and regional press.  

Diane has 30 years’ experience in retail, and is a founding director of Springboard which was established in 2002. She specialises in delivering intelligence and insights on both current retail performance and long term retail trends to retailers, hospitality occupiers, landlords, investors and place managers.

Diane leads all of Springboard’s insights, and authors its regular commentaries, articles, reviews, and topical reports.  In collaboration with The NPD Group, Diane co-authors an annual report on the eating out market in the UK which is published in November of each year.

Diane recently led a £1 million two year project funded by the UK government, based on enhancing the customer experience in retail, collaborating with UK universities in Manchester and Cardiff. The project has revolutionised the way high streets are classified, paving the way for the introduction of new innovative strategies for town centres to ensure their resilience in a multi-channel world.

Diane holds an MSc in Property Investment and was recently awarded a Senior Fellowship of the Institute of Place Management, one of only 12 Senior Fellows worldwide. Diane was also been named as one of the world’s top retail influencers by two separate organisations in 2019.


Conference programme

The Conference Programme will be published here in due course

Social Events

We are delighted to announce that the conference social will take place on Wednesday 8th July at the Whitworth Locke

The evening will be open to all delegates who are attending the full conference or on the day rate for the 8th July. Drinks on arrival and food will be provided and there will be a bar to purchase drinks. If you wish to also stay at the Whitworth Locke during the conference please book direct with them using the promotional code LOCKEDIN for a 20% discount.

Travel and accommodation

There is a wide range of accommodation types in Manchester city centre (and near to the University campus) to suit different budgets, however, thanks to Marketing Manchester, we have some special rates available for conference delegates available to book here:

Book Now

Please note: There are limited places in student halls as part of the registration process should you wish to book those rooms. Prices start at £119.76.

The venue for the conference social, Whitworth Locke, are offering delegates 20% off accommodation. Please book direct with them using the promotional code LOCKEDIN 

Conference Committee and Contact

Chair: Dr. Louise Platt (Business School)

Prof Dave Day (History)

Dr. Nick Piercy (History)

Dr. Steve Millington (Institute of Place Management)

Dr. Tina Richardson (Cultural Practices)

Dr. Leah Gillooly (Sport Marketing)

Dr. Chloe Steadman (Business School/Institute of Place Management)

Dr. Susan O’Shea (Sociology)

PGR Reps: Lisa Taylor, Gail Skelly and Matt Hutchinson

Twitter: Follow us on Twitter @LSA2020_ManMet