Date of Award


Publication Type

Master Thesis

Degree Name




First Advisor

Snelgrove, Ryan

Second Advisor

Greenham, Craig


Institutional theory, Organizational change, Youth sport




The purpose of this study was to examine a potential change to the way minor hockey is played in Ontario. To date, the adoption of cross-ice play has varied throughout the province, making it a fruitful context for studying change prior to implementation. The modified version of the Integrative Model of Organizational Change presented by Legg, Snelgrove, and Wood (2016) served as the theoretical framework for the study. Data were collected using semi-structured interviews with stakeholders (i.e., decision makers, board members, coaches) from key provincial and regional hockey organizations in Ontario. The current study aimed to develop a better understanding of the dynamics influencing the acceptance, resistance and sustainability of organizational change in a youth sport context. The findings provided insight about the pressures facing minor hockey associations, the reasons why organizations believe those pressures might lead to a consideration of change, the mechanisms that sustain the status quo despite being faced with pressures, and factors that could enable change. In sum, this research can help stakeholders and organizations understand the challenges of the change process prior to implementation, while contributing to organizational theory and change literature through a focus on the concepts of institutional work as well as an extension of the model presented by Legg et al. (2016).