ERASMUS+ National Sports Governance Observer: Benchmarking sports governance across national boundaries

Head of project:
Prof. Dr. Jürgen Mittag

IESF staff entrusted with project:
Ninja Putzmann
Till Müller-Schoell

Period of research:
February 2017 – October 2018

Project coordination

Play the Game
PTG is an initiative run by the Danish Institute for Sports Studies (Idan), aiming at raising the ethical standards of sport and promoting democracy, transparency and freedom of expression in world sport. Through its nine international conferences since 1997, its website, news production, extensive network, and research initiatives, Play the Game has become a unique independent platform for raising and developing awareness on a number of issues related to modern sport.

The Danish Institute for Sports Studies (Idrættens Analyseinstitut - Idan) is an independent research centre set up by the Danish Ministry of Culture in 2004. The primary objectives of Idan is to initiate and develop a broad range of social science research projects in the field of sports, to analyse sports political initiatives, and to stimulate public debate about the most important issues in the sports sector.

Full Partners:
KU Leuven
Utrecht University
The University of Warsaw
Molde University College
University of Bucharest

Associated Partners (advice, implementation, dissemination):
The Cyprus Sports Organisation
The Flemish Sports Confederation
The Romanian Football Federation
The Danish Football Association
The Polish Golf Union
Norwegian Football Association
The Enlarged Partial Agreement on Sport
The International Council of Sport Science and Physical Education
The European Association for Sports Management 

Project goals:
The main aim of SGO 2017: ‘National Sports Governance Observer: Benchmarking sports governance across national boundaries’ is to assist and inspire national sports organisations to raise the quality of their governance practices. The project involves in the first instance the partners included in the Erasmus+ application (see below) and will try to attach partners from third countries inside and outside the EU in the course of 2017 and 2018. More specifically, the project sets out to

- enable sports leaders and outside stakeholders to measure, discuss and amend the governance standards and practices of sports organisations by adapting and applying the Sports Governance Observer benchmarking tool in national sports organisations.

- establish sustainable networks between academics, practitioners and other key stakeholders with a common interest in good governance in sport at a national as well as international level through national training workshops and the Play the Game conference.

- educate and train sports leaders, researchers, and government representatives to understand, introduce, evaluate, and sustain good governance standards and practices in their respective organisations.

- provide government officials with knowledge and tools that enable them to engage in dialogue with the sports movement with a view to inspiring better governance in sport and creating a robust framework for sport’s use of public grants.

- produce, provide and disseminate national as well as comparative international and national data based on the Sports Governance Observer tool and the ‘Sports Governance Observer 2015’ report

- initiate public debates on sports governance to a wider public in order to raise the awareness of the topics and challenges related to good governance among athletes, sports volunteers, association leaders, fan groups, sponsors and policy makers, thus enabling them to create more efficient organisations and engage in the debate about and decision-making processes in sport.