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Improving Football Governance through Supporter Involvement and Community Ownership

SD Europe, along with eight fans’ organisations and Cooperatives Europe, delivered a Preparatory Action in the Field of Sport, entitled Improving Football Governance through Supporter Involvement and Community Ownership, which ran from March 2012 to June 2013.

The objectives of the project were to:

  • Strengthen the European supporter ownership network by capacity building on local, national and European levels;
  • Promote good governance amongst supporters’ trusts/groups, clubs, and other stakeholders;
  • Promote democratic ownership structures in football;
  • Promote football’s social value through supporter involvement;
  • Develop a long-term vision for spreading good governance principles from clubs to governing bodies and other sports.

The main activities were:

  • A needs analysis to inform the project of needs of supporters’ trusts/groups in relation to the governance of their clubs and national associations;
  • Delivery of workshops in six countries and a final conference;
  • Publication and dissemination of eight national tailored toolkits and a final report;
  • Ongoing exchanges of experiences and assessment of best practices.

The project marked the first time that there had been a coordinated approach to the development of grassroots, democratic supporters’ organisations across Europe, with the aim of increasing the involvement of football supporters in the governance of clubs, leagues and national associations. It also allowed these grassroots groups to come together, exchange experiences, understand national and cultural differences and identify areas of common purpose; thereby contributing to key EU agendas and values and involving citizens in democratic processes and volunteering.

The toolkits and final report mentioned above can be found on our Resources page.

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