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The George Torkildsen Literary Award


The George Torkildsen Literary Award seeks to perpetuate the memory of this remarkable individual who served as Chair of the World Leisure Board of Directors. He was the first community sports center manager in Britain and has been called the father of sport and leisure in that country.

A prolific writer, lecturer and teacher, he authored Leisure and Recreation Management, Leisure Management A to Z: A Dictionary of Terms, and Torkildsen’s Guides to Leisure Management. This award is presented to an individual who has made a significant contribution to the recreation, parks and leisure service literature by advancing innovative ideas, thoughts and/or philosophical perspectives.

2014 Recipient of the George Torkildsen Literary Award

Dr. Atara Sivan

Professor, Department of Education Studies
Associate Dean, Faculty of Social Sciences
Hong Kong Baptist University


Dr. Sivan is Professor, Department of Education Studies and Associate Dean, Faculty of Social Sciences, Hong Kong Baptist University. She serves in different leading capacities of the World Leisure Organization including the President of the World Leisure Academy and the Editor-in-Chief of World Leisure Journal.   A well-recognized scholar, Dr. Sivan has made an invaluable contribution to the field of knowledge and practice of leisure education.  Dr. Sivan’s research is evident through her authoring or editing of six books and compendiums.  In addition, Dr. Sivan has published over 60 academic papers and book chapters as well as 20 reports.  This scholarly output as well as her community outreach activities has resulted in over 40 competitive grants, which have been obtained from large-scale university, government, strategy development and consultancy competitive funds. She has also made numerous keynote and invited presentations and conducted seminars in international conferences bringing a global insight to the field. Dr. Sivan’s passion and dedication has been illustrated in undertaking major leadership roles in the area of leisure education. These include serving as the scientific advisor to the development of the first comprehensive leisure education curriculum for schools in Israel, founder and president of the World Leisure Organization – Hong Kong Chapter and leader of outreach community projects on leisure education and well-being.


Criteria for Selection

  • Contributions that advance the professional literature in the area of recreation, parks, conservation, environment or leisure;
  • Research or scholarly endeavors that significantly influence new ideas, concepts and/or reveal new insights into recreation, parks, conservation, environment or leisure;
  • Ideas, concepts or writings that arouse professional awareness and/or provide new insights leading to major changes in the way in which the recreation, park and leisure service movement is viewed or practiced; and
  • Significant literary activities over a life time that reflect continuous and sustained contributions. Contributions may be reflected in a series of articles, books, lectures, research and technical reports, monographs or other forms.

Selection Procedures

Applications will be evaluated on:
  • Their literary contributions to advancing leisure concerns world wide;
  • The impact of such contributions as reflected in their influence to the general public and/or profession; and
  • The clarity, solutions and insights brought to emerging trends, issues and concepts as well as issues, problems and concerns.

Application/Award Procedures

The nomination file should include the following:
  • Name of the individual, title, organizational affiliation and full contact details;
  • A written statement of not more than1,000 words that addresses the nominees scholarly efforts and/or other professional contributions, referencing the impact that the nominees contributions have made to the literature; and
  • The nominees curriculum vita.
  • Nominations are due July 1, 2014.
  • Please send complete nominations to secretariat@worldleisure.org or fax them to 319-273-6413.

Recognition/Benefits to the Recipient

Each award winner receives a framed certificate

We Foster Inquiry

Research and scholarship to discover the personal and social potentialities of leisure experiences.

We Engage in Informed Advocacy

By advocating for conditions optimizing leisure experiences: legislation, infastructure, leadership and programming.