Coaches play a fundamental role in the development of sport and society at all levels of participation and Dr Dawson’s research informs both sport policy and practice by examining the way coaches work, develop their expertise and influence the lives of those they coach.

Prior to commencing at Victoria University in 2015, Dr Dawson’s research focussed on the Australian coaching and sport science workforces and the policy development and management challenges faced by national, state and community sport organisations. He has led two large-scale research projects profiling the Australian coaching and sport science workforces that surveyed 1400 Australian coaches and 200 sport scientists across all levels of participation. The findings of these two studies have directly informed sport policy about the challenging work practices of coaches and sport scientists, the rewards and costs of working in sport, and their future developmental needs.

Dr Dawson’s recent peer-reviewed publications focus on coach career development policy, the career experiences of Australian strength and conditioning coaches, sport scientists and junior Australian football coaches.

Recent publications

Peer Reviewed Journals

Dioth, T., Gastin, P., & Dawson, A. (Accepted). Career facilitators and obstacles of Australian football development coaches. International Journal of Sport Science and Coaching.

Dawson, A., Kremenchutskaya, N. & Gastin, P. (2015). Staying on track: A profile of the Australian athletics coaching workforce.  Modern Athlete and Coach, 53(1), pp. 31-38.

York, R. Gastin, P. & Dawson, A. (2014). The career experiences of Australian sport scientists. International Journal of Sport Science and Coaching, 9(6), pp. 1437-1456.

Dawson, A. & Phillips, P. (2013). Coach career development: Who is responsible? Sport Management Review, 16(4), pp. 477–487.

Dawson, A. Wehner, K., Leonard, Z., & Gastin, P (2013). Building Without A Plan: the Career Experiences of Australian Strength and Conditioning Coaches. Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research 27(5), pp. 1423-1434.

Book Chapters

Gastin, P. & Dawson, A. (2015). Career development in exercise and sport. In Kishor Vaidya (Ed.) Exercise and Sports for the Curious: Why Study Exercise and Sports. (ISBN 978-1-925128-08-6) Canberra, ACT: Curious Academic Publishing.

Industry Reports

Dawson, A., Wehner, K., Gastin, P., Dwyer, D., Kremer, P., & Allan, M. (2014). Profiling the Australian high performance and sport science workforce. Brisbane: Exercise and Sport Science Australia.

Dawson, A., Wehner, K., Phillips, P., Gastin, P., & Salmon, J. (2013). Profiling the Australian coaching workforce. Melbourne: Deakin University.

Conference Podium Presentations

Dawson, A. (2013).Profiling the Australian coaching workforce. Published abstractfor the ICCE Global Coach Conference: Durban, South Africa.

Dawson, A. (2010). Managing the career development of Australian coaches. Invited speaker at The Evolution of the Athlete Conference: Brisbane, QLD.

Dawson, A. (2007). Career transition and development. Presentation paper for the Telstra Australian Track & Field Coaches Association National Congress: Adelaide, SA.

Dawson, A. (2007). Coach career transition and development: The nexus between policy and practice. Published abstractfor the ICCE Global Coach Conference: Beijing, China.

Conference Posters

Dawson, A., Carson, F. & Kavanagh, T. (2015). The community coach as a health promoter: A systematic review of the literature. Published abstract for the ICCE Global Coach Conference: Verumaki, Finland.

Dawson, A. J. & Kellett, P. W., (2011). A organisational model of coach career development. Published abstractfor the ICCE Global Coach Conference: Paris, France.

Dawson, A. (2007). Coach Education at Deakin University: Lessons from the past and a vision for the future. Published abstractfor the ICCE Global Coach Conference: Beijing, China.

Teaching responsibilities

Bachelor of Sport Coaching - Unit Coordinator for:

PhD students

Current supervision: Dr Dawson currently supervises 3 PhD students and 1 Masters by research student.

Research grants

Since completing his PhD in 2010, Dr Dawson has attracted over $200,000 in research funding and has developed considerable expertise managing large-scale population-based research projects.

Professional memberships

  • Athletics Australia – Level 4 Accredited Coach – Sprints, Hurdles Relays
  • International Council on Coaching Excellence – Member since 2007

Industry experience

Coach development consultant to national, state and community sport organisations such as:

  • AFL Coaches Association
  • Australian Karate Federation
  • Department of Sport and Recreation Victoria
  • VicSport.


Dr Dawson's research contributes to the:

Areas of expertise

  • Coach development & expertise
  • Coaching workforce development, policy & management
  • Role of the coach as a health promoter

Contact details

(03) 9919 9456