I have an MSc and a PhD in sport psychology from Liverpool John Moores University in the UK and specialize in the broad area of organizational culture. I’m an active researcher and am currently engaged in a number of research and applied projects that investigate and influence people’s experience of work, sport and well-being.
Prior to joining Keystone in 2017, I worked in a range of roles and settings, including management, consultancy, mental health, social care and the nonprofit sector. These are experiences that I have enjoyed immensely and that have considerably shaped my views on psychology and the way that I teach.
Outside of Keystone, I live a fairly quiet life. I enjoy reading, hiking, Netflix, travel, and hanging out with my wife and two cats.
Education – Degrees & Certifications
- Ph.D. Sport Psychology, Liverpool John Moores University, England
- MSc. Sport Psychology. Liverpool John Moores University, England
- BSc. Psychology. The University of Stirling, Scotland
Professor Michael McDougall, Ph.D., was interviewed about his research on culture and meaning for the Physical Activity Researcher podcast as part of its Meaningful Sport series. Listen to the podcast.
In the News
April 2022 – Dr. McDougall and former Keystone faculty member Mac Ross had their article, “Hosting and Human Rights: The Olympics in the Twenty-First Century,” published in Frontiers in Sport and Active Living this week.
July 2021 – Dr. McDougall and former Keystone faculty Mac Ross wrote an article for the Washington Post, entitled, “The Olympics is a disaster for people who live in host cities” which looks at housing displacement and cost to citizens as host cities prepare for the Olympics.
January 2021 – Dr. McDougall presented to an international audience consisting of leadership, HR, and consulting professionals at the ‘Exploring the Future of Organizational Change’, virtual conference, hosted by the Change Management Network. His presentation focused on ‘myths’ of organizational culture and their relationship to bureaucracy.
August 2020 – “Meaningfulness in sport seems to be related to how athletes approach their craft as well as their overall framework of life meaning”. Dr. McDougall and colleagues’ recent manuscript on craftsmanship and meaningful sport has been accepted by the Sociology of Sport Journal and is now available via ResearchGate. https://bit.ly/31eKxTG
July 2020: Dr. McDougall’s co-authored paper “Hobby, career or vocation? Meanings in sports coaching and their implications for recruitment and retention of coaches” has been accepted for publication in the journal “Managing Sport and Leisure.” The article involved collaboration with researchers from The University of Jyväskylä, Finland, and Liverpool John Moores University, England.
July 2020: Assistant Professor Michael McDougall’s recent manuscript “Organisational Culture Beyond Consensus and Clarity: Narratives from Elite Sport” has been accepted for publication in the internationally refereed journal “The Sport Psychologist.”
January 2020: Michael McDougall defended his doctoral dissertation, “Organisational Culture in Sport Psychology: Myths, Deficiencies and the Broadening of Cultural Horizons,” at Liverpool John Moores University for the degree of Ph.D.”
2020: Michael McDougall was recently selected as a Guest Editor for a forthcoming edition of the Journal of Emerging Sport Studies
July 2019: Michael McDougall, whose research with colleagues, “Craftsmanship: A novel approach for exploring meaningfulness of sport” and “Reflection and brooding rumination as predictors of athletes’ depressive symptoms” was presented at the European Federation of Sport Psychology Conference in Münster, Germany.
From the first time I stepped on campus I found Keystone to be incredibly welcoming and supportive. The campus is scenic in all seasons, which makes it a great place to spend your days. From a teaching perspective, I love the small class sizes because it really lets us get to know our students, their interests and what they want to achieve.
- Sport Psychology
- Theories of Personality
- Theories of Clinical Counseling
- Social Psychology
- Research Methods
- Research Analysis
- Senior Seminar
- Qualitative Research Methods – Special Section
I mainly research culture(s) and themes of organization in sport and business contexts. I accent heavily from philosophy, anthropology, sociology, cultural studies, cultural psychology and critical scholarship (rather than mainstream psychology and organizational theories) to ground and develop my ideas and analyses. I’m particularly interested in organizational research that helps to bridge the applied-academic gap and that can positively influence the world of work and people’s experience of it.
Current Research Projects:
- Critical Culture Scholarship
- Meaningful Work
- Craftsmanship Culture (i.e. work that is done for its own sake; an ethic of excellence; master-apprentice relationships; deep connection to the process of the work itself and the end product).
- Athletes and Mental Wellbeing
- Communityship, Activism and Local Resistance in Sport and Organization
- The Olympics and Human Rights Violations
- McDougall, M., Ryba, T. V., Ronkainen, N. (2020). Is culture (still) a useful category of psychological and social analysis? International Journal of Sport Psychology, 51(6), 626-645.
- Ronkainen, N., McDougall, M., Tikkanen, O., Feddersen, N., & Tahtinen, R. (2020). Beyond health and happiness? An exploratory study into craftsmanship and the meaningfulness of sport. Sociology of Sport Journal, 1, 1-10.
- Ronkainen, N. J., Ryba, T. V., McDougall, M., Tod, D., & Tikkanen, O. (2020). Hobby, career or vocation? Meanings in sports coaching and their implications for recruitment and retention of coaches. Managing Sports and Leisure.
- McDougall, M., Ronkainen, N., Richardson, D., Littlewood, M., & Nesti, M. (2020). Organisational Culture Beyond Consensus and Clarity: Narratives from Elite Sport. The Sport Psychologist, 34(4), 288-299.
- Tahtinen, R., McDougall, M., Feddersen, N., Tikkanen, O., Morris, R., & Ronkainen, N.J. (2019). Me, myself, and my thoughts: The influence of brooding and reflective rumination on depressive symptoms in athletes in the United Kingdom. Journal of Clinical Sport Psychology, 1, (Advanced Online Publication), 14(3), 285-304.
- McDougall, M., Ronkainen, N., Richardson, D., Littlewood, M., & Nesti, M. (2020): Three team and organisational culture myths and their consequences for sport psychology research and practice, International Review of Sport and Exercise Psychology, 13(1), 147-162. DOI:10.1080/1750984X.2019.1638433
- McDougall, M., & Ronkainen, N. (2019). Organisational culture is not dead…yet: A response to Wagstaff and Burton-Wylie. Sport & Exercise Psychology Review, 15, 13-19.
- McDougall, M., Nesti, M., Richardson, D., & Littlewood., M. (2017). Emphasising the culture in culture change: Examining current perspectives of culture and offering some alternative ones. Sport and Exercise Psychology Review, 13(1), 47-61.
- McDougall, M., Nesti, M., & Richardson, D. (2015). The challenges of sport psychology delivery in elite and professional sport: Reflections from experienced sport psychologists. The Journal of Sport Psychology, 29, 265-277. DOI: https://dx.doi.org/10.1123/tsp.2014-0081
- Ross, M., & McDougall, M. (2021). Learning from the past, planning for the future: Olympic hosting and human rights. International Center of Olympic Studies’ (ICOS) 15th International Symposium for Olympic and Paralympic Research
- Ronkainen, N., & McDougall, M. (2021). Lessons Learned from Meaningful Work: Implications for Sport Psychology and Understanding Meaningfulness in Sport. International Society of Sport Psychology (ISSP), 15th World Congress, Taiwan.
- McDougall, M., Stobodzian, J., Ross, M. (2021). The bulldozing of human rights and mental health: The Olympics and forced eviction. Early Career and Student Conference: The International Qualitative Research in Sport and Exercise (QRSE). Anglia Ruskin University, UK.
- McDougall, M., & O’ Connell, B. (2021). 3 organizational culture myths: Implications for practice and anti-bureaucracy. The Change Management Network. Exploring the Future of Organizational Change. (virtual presentation).
- Tahtinen, R., Tikkanen, O., McDougall, M., Halldorson, V., Feddersen, N., Mitchell, L., Thomas, L., Ronkainen, N. J. (2019). Craftsmanship: A novel approach for exploring meaningfulness of sport. European Federation of Sport Psychology (FEPSAC) Congress. Muenster, Germany. (presentation).
- Tahtinen, R., McDougall, M., Tikkanen, O., Feddersen, N., Mitchell, L., Thomas, L., Ronkainen, N. J. (2019). Reflection and brooding rumination as predictors of athletes’ depressive symptoms. European Federation of Sport Psychology (FEPSAC) Congress. Muenster, Germany. (presentation).
- McDougall, M. (2019). Captain Cook, leaking ships and organizational culture. Faculty colloquium. Keystone College.
- McDougall, M. (2018). Band-Aid’s don’t work: Challenging traditional team building and conflict practices. Keystone Professional Day. Keystone College.
- McDougall, M. (2018). Three paradigms for understanding organizational culture: Narratives from elite sport. In, Ronkainen, N.J, McDougall, M., Feddersen, N., & Mi Lee, S. Going beyond what is shared in the culture(s) of sport: An invitation to interdisciplinary dialogue.(symposium). International Conference on Qualitative Research in Sport and Exercise, Vancouver, Canada.
- McDougall, M., & Nesti, M. (2018). Challenging organizational culture myths in sport psychology. International Conference on Qualitative Research in Sport and Exercise, Vancouver, Canada. (poster presentation)
- McDougall, M. (2018). Teaching Sport Psychology and Anxiety Management by Encouraging Students to Become their Own Sport Psychologist. National Institute on the Teaching of Psychology, St Pete Beach, USA. (poster presentation)
- McDougall, M. (2016). Putting some culture back into culture change: Time to ask what culture is and not only what it can do for us. North American Society for Psychology of Sport and Physical Activity (NASPSPA), Montreal, Canada. (poster presentation)
- McDougall, M. (2013). Relationships, congruence and culture in high-performance sport. Coaching Matters, The University of Stirling, Scotland.
- McDougall, M. (2013). The challenges of sport psychology delivery in elite and professional sport: Reflections from leading sport psychologists. Scottish Division of Sport and Exercise Psychology, Edinburgh, Scotland.
- McDougall, M., & Ross, M. (2021, July, 29). The Olympics is a disaster for people who live in host cities. The Washington Post. https://www.washingtonpost.com/outlook/2021/07/29/olympics-is-disaster-people-who-live-host-cities/
Ross, M., & McDougall, M. (2021). The Olympics is a Disaster for People who Live in Host Cities. Physical Activity Researcher Podcast. https://paresearcher.podbean.com/e/ross-mcdougall2/
- Ross, M., & McDougall, M. (2021). The Olympics, Human Rights, and Management of Meaning in Sport. Physical Activity Researcher Podcast. https://paresearcher.podbean.com/e/ross-mcdougall/
- McDougall, M. (2021). Questioning Culture and Meaning in Sport. Physical Activity Researcher Podcast. https://paresearcher.podbean.com/e/mcdougall/
- McDougall, M. (2021). The Dark Sides of Meaningful (Sport) Work. Physical Activity Researcher Podcast. https://paresearcher.podbean.com/e/mcdougall2/
Højbjerre Larsen, McDougall, M., & William, T. Expert opinion – Qualitative research (Pt2). Physical Activity Researcher Podcast. https://paresearcher.podbean.com/e/eo-qual-2/