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Washington State University
College of Education

Simon Licen

Medium shot of Simon Licen over a generic sports/recreation background

Simon Licen

Associate Professor, Department of
Educational Leadership and Sport Management
Pullman campus
Cleveland Hall 261
Pullman, WA  99164-2136


Curriculum Vitae
Research interests

Simon Ličen’s (LEE-chen) studies mediated communication and sport in changing societies. His primary research interests include mass communication and sport, the negotiation of identity through the media, and the media in international, post-socialist and post-colonial societies. Between 2012 and 2016, he was member of the Board of Directors of the International Association for Communication and Sport. He also has research and publishing experience in social media and public relations, as well as sociology, kinesiology, governance, politics, sustainability and event management as they pertain to sport..

Teaching and professional interests

At Washington State University, Dr. Ličen has taught undergraduate courses in Sport Communication and Sport in American Society, as well as a graduate course in Mass Communication in Sport Management. Since 2015, he has been a visiting lecturer at Beijing Sport University (China) where he teaches a course in Sports Journalism. In fall 2020, he was Visiting Associate Professor at the Faculty of Tourism Studies of the University of Primorska in Slovenia. In 2022, he was named Senior Research Fellow of the Center for International Sport Communication and Diplomacy Studies at Beijing Foreign Studies University in China. Before joining Washington State University, he taught at the University of Ljubljana (Slovenia). He held guest lectures at the University of Alabama, University of Memphis, Lewis & Clark State College, Beijing Sport University (China), University of Ljubljana (Slovenia), and University of Primorska (Slovenia). Among other, he also served as the Director of Media and Communications of a WTA Tour (women’s professional tennis) event, was a member of the UNESCO Slovenian National Commission, and contributed to the organization of several editions of the Ljubljana Marathon and the U20 European Basketball Championship for Men. In 2019, he sat on the program committee for the 2019 Play the Game conference.

Research Presentations
  • “Sports reporting in the East and West: ISPS 2021 in China and the US,” presented at the Play the Game conference in Odense, Denmark, in June 2022. Watch (22:39 onward).
  • “Impact and Legacy of Major Sports Events: Findings From the 2013 EuroBasket,” presented at the Sport Management Research Meetings at Washington State University, October 25, 2017. Watch.
Media Appearances

Dr. Ličen is frequently interviewed, quoted, cited, and referenced by media all across the globe. Here is just a sampling of some places you can find his name:

  • Guest correspondent for Večer newspaper. Read more (in Slovenian).
  • Interviewed by Radio Slovenia on sport, racism and politics in the United States. Listen (in Slovenian).
  • Interviewed by Radio Capodistria on sport, racism and politics in the United States. Listen (in Italian).
  • Interviewed by Radio Capodistria on soccer, the United States, and the FIFA World Cup. Listen (in Italian).
  • Interviewed by Radio Capodistria on American perceptions of the 2018 Winter Olympic Games in PyeongChang. Listen (in Italian).
  • Op-Ed in Huffington Post. Read more.
  • Interviewed by Radio Slovenija on media coverage of sports. Listen (in Slovenian).
  • Quoted by Radio Capodistria, an Italian-Slovenian radio station, on expectations from the Rio 2016 Olympics. Read more.
  • Interviewed by Radio Slovenija on sport, media, and capital ahead of the Rio Olympics. Listen (in Slovenian).
  • Interviewed by WalletHub ahead of the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio. Read more.
  • Quoted by in connection to an international study on the Olympics. Read more.
  • Interviewed by TV Koper-Capodistria, a Slovenian TV station. Watch (31:54 onward).
  • Interviewed in Jalka, an Estonian football (soccer) monthly. Read more.
  • Quoted by The Guardian. Read more.
  • Interviewed by Pacific Standard Magazine. Read more.
  • Quoted by Washington State Magazine. Read more.
Selected recent publications

Ličen, S. & Mir, M. (2024). King of the flying hill: TV broadcasts of ski jumping events in Planica, Slovenia. In Solberg, H.A., Swart-Arries, K., & Storm, R. (Eds.), Research Handbook on Major Sporting Events (pp. 285-299). Cheltenham: Edward Elgar. Read it!

Ličen, S. (2023). Sport, media and business in Southeast Europe in the 21st century: Recommendations for professionals and scholars. In Dašić, D. (Ed.), Sporticopedia (pp. 23-35). Belgrade: Faculty of Sport. Read it!

Ličen, S., Frandsen, K., Horky, T., Onwumechili, C., & Wei, W. (2022). Rediscovering mediatizaton of sport. Communication & Sport, 10(5), 795-810. Read it!

Ličen, S., Antunovic, D., & Bartoluci, S. (2022). A Public Service? Mediatization of the Olympic Games in Croatia and Slovenia. Published online before print at Communication & Sport, 10(5), 931-950. Read it!

Ličen, S. & Jedlicka, S. (2022). Sustainable development principles in U.S. sport management graduate programs. Sport, Education & Society, 27(1), 99-112. Read it!

Ličen, S. (2021). More than fun and games: How the world will look at American sports—and America—after Covid-19. In Billings, A.C., Wenner, L., & Hardin, M. (Eds.), American Sport in the Shadow of a Pandemic: Communicative Insights (pp. 31-46). Pieterlen and Bern, Switzerland: Peter Lang. Click here.

Ličen, S. & Jedlicka, S. (2021). Governance of Professional Sport Beyond the U.S. In Ruihley, B.J. & Li, B. (Eds.), Administration and Governance in a Global Sport Economy (pp. 229-246). Dubuque, IA: Kendall-Hunt. Click here.

Ličen, S. (2020). Bailouts and tax breaks: Slovenian Olympic Committee’s communication during Covid-19. In P. M. Pedersen, B. J. Ruihley, & B. Li (Eds.), Sport and the pandemic: Perspectives on Covid-19’s impact on the sport industry (pp. 137-145). London: Routledge. Click here.

Kustec, S. & Ličen, S. (2020). Sport and welfare in Central and Eastern European countries. In Martelli, S., Testa, A., & Porro, N. (Eds.). Sport, Welfare and Social Policy in the European Union (pp. 132-142). London: Routledge. Read it!

Ličen, S. & Bejek, B. (2019). Slovenian Daily Newspaper Coverage of Women’s Sports in 2015. Družboslovne Razprave, 92, 7-33. Read it!

Ličen, S. (2019). Influence of hosting a major sports event on patriotic attitudes: The EuroBasket 2013 competition in Slovenia. International Review for the Sociology of Sport, 54(3), 361-383. Read it!

Jakubowska, H. & Ličen, S. (2019). The role of mass media in the reproduction of gendered national identity: Polish coverage of women’s and men’s basketball championships. International Review for the Sociology of Sport, 54(3), 302-324. Read it!

Brown, K., Ličen, S., Billings, A.C., & Devlin, M. B. (2017). Envisioning Slovenia, Telecast from Brazil: Relationships Between National Identity and Slovenian Viewership of the 2016 Rio Summer Olympic Games. International Journal of Sport Communication, 10(4), 487-507. Read it!

Ličen, S., Lončar, M., Delorme, N., Horky, T., & Jakubowska, H. (2017). International newspaper coverage of the 2013 EuroBasket for men. Communication & Sport, 5(4), 448-470. Read it!

Ličen, S. (2017). Sport as international communication. In Billings, A. C. (Ed.), Defining Sport Communication (pp. 209-222). London: Routledge.

Ličen, S. & Cole, A. N. (2017). Public perception of social impacts of the 2013 EuroBasket for men. International Journal of Sport Management, 18(1), 89-115. Read the abstract!

Educational background

Ph.D., University of Ljubljana, Journalism/Social Sciences, 2011

B.A., University of Ljubljana, Journalism, 2005