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Learn from global leaders in sports education


International Sports Management Programme Director Dr Oscar Mwaanga has been appointed a visiting professor at Kwame Nkrumah University in Zambia. We talked to him about the journey that has led him here and how his global expertise enhances the programme. 

Dr Oscar Mwaanga, Programme Director for International Sports Management

Dr Oscar Mwaanga, Programme Director of the Postgraduate Certificate in International Sports Management at the University of London, has recently been appointed a visiting professor at Kwame Nkrumah University (KNU) in his native Zambia. This appointment recognises Dr Mwaanga’s remarkable scholarly accomplishments and patriotic leadership in sports development both within Zambia and sub-Saharan Africa and internationally. Not only is Dr Mwaanga the first person to achieve a PhD in sports science since Zambia gained political independence in 1964, he now becomes the first Zambian to receive this professorship at KNU. 

Dr Mwaanga’s engagement will be invaluable for KNU's ambitious plan to become a world-class PE and sports education university and decolonise its curriculum — two of Dr Mwaanga’s specialist areas. 

“This Professorship finds me at the University of London, leading the decolonisation curriculum which is about unlocking the possibilities in education that were not there historically,” explains Dr Mwaanga. “The current Western education paradigm is centred around a middle-class white male, to the exclusion of others. We don't know what our lives would be if women, people from ethnic and varied backgrounds were given access to the generation of knowledge.” 

Professor Mwaanga is an exemplary figure in the field of sport management and has had a significant impact on the development of the discipline. He joined University of London in 2019 to set up its first ever International Sport Management programme, which now boasts over 200 students from 71 countries and includes some high-profile tutors, as well as a large number of students who are active and former Olympians.  

Dr Mwaanga recalls being a student at KNU himself. According to him, it was his lecturers’ belief in him that inspired him to pursue this career and continue to educate others.  

I remember two of my lecturers just believed in me. I stood on their shoulders. They passed me their baton when they ran out of their time. And I don’t want to drop it. I want to keep it for the next generation of leaders.

Prior to his appointment at the University of London, Professor Mwaanga also set up the first ever master's degree programme in Sport Management at Solent University in Southampton — a testament to his commitment and dedication towards advancing this field. 

Dr Mwaanga has also led a distinguished career outside academia — he is widely regarded as the father of Sport for Development (SDP), a method of bringing about social change through the use of sports, due to his pioneering efforts in Sub-Saharan Africa at the turn of the century. His role in founding world-renowned organisations and programmes such as Kicking AIDS Out, EduSport Foundation (Zambia), Go Sisters, EduMove and EduKicks has been instrumental in advancing SDP around the world.  

If you look at one of the values we have here at the University of London, a part of our mission is to strengthen bonds across regional national culture, economic and political boundaries.

Last year The Commonwealth Ministerial Conference commended Dr Mwaanga's lead consultancy on African Union Sports Policy for 2020–2030, which has resulted in a blueprint for the 'Sporting Africa we want’ agenda. His dedication to SDP will continue shaping this important field for future generations and ensure that its impact can be felt by many more people worldwide. 

I take this professorship with that humility and mindfulness, and a sense of responsibility that is beyond me, which is for my community. As I pass it on to the next generation of leaders, I am hoping they'll do better than me.

As Programme Director, Dr Mwaanga brings his global experience to the curriculum, paying particular attention to enabling and inspiring students who use their newly acquired entrepreneurial skills to develop sports in their local communities.  

Take advantage of the expertise Dr Mwaanga and other highly accomplished tutors offer at the University of London — find out more about the PGCert International Sports Management.