Michael’s research focuses on the relationships between sport & physical activity (physical culture), the governance of bodies, mediated (sporting) spectacles, identities and urban spaces. His current research addresses the relationship between sport mega-events, urban renewal, and social inequalities.
His work aims to push at the ontological, epistemological, methodological, and pedagogic boundaries of the critical, social science oriented study of sport and physical activity.
Michael has received funding from the British Council, the ESRC, the AHRC, the British Academy, Sport England, Women Win, and the Jiangsu Provincial Government (PRC).
He is Managing Editor of Leisure Studies and an editorial board member for a number of journals. He has published over 100 academic articles and recently edited the The Routledge Handbook of Physical Culture (2017). He has appeared as a guest related to his research on BBC Radio 5Live, BBC Scotland, Sky News, CBC (Canada), TVNZ (New Zealand) as well as having written invited articles for The Guardian, Forbes, The Independent, the Financial Times, The Conversation and El Pais (Madrid, ESP).