Centre of Expertise Health Innovation

Research Group Impact of Sport

Sports promote social interaction, which may contribute to a dynamic, resilient and inclusive society. To create valuable social interactions, sports organisations must be able to cope with increasingly diverse communities. A considerable task for the traditional sports club, which requires new forms of collaboration between sports clubs, residents, local and national government, public and private organisations.

About the research group

Mission

The Impact of Sport research group focuses on promoting social vitality, inclusion and resilience by strengthening organisations, professionals and volunteers involved in sports management. The research investigates how to positively enhance the social impact of sport in urban areas facing important social issues and challenges, especially in ethnically diverse communities.   

Vision

Impact of Sport researchers are working within communities alongside residents, sports associations and other sports providers, students, municipalities, public and private organisations. Action research and innovations from living labs generate new useful knowledge on cooperation and co-existence, unlocking potential (new) organisational forms, practical skills for sports professionals and volunteers and a new, positive impact of sport on society. The research group works in a demand-driven and practice-oriented manner, in The Hague and beyond.

What is the impact of sport?

About the professor

dr. Frank van Eekeren

As a management and organisation research scientist, Frank van Eekeren has spent over 20 years investigating the social significance of sport in relation with the organisation of sport. In his PhD dissertation De Waardenvolle Club (the valuable club), he describes an ideal sports organisation that creates public value in addition to value creation in the nexus of sport and business. He conducts research in and around the field of sports, both locally and internationally, and publishes in journals, sports publications and blogs. Frank is also employed as Associate Professor at Utrecht University School of Governance.

+31 (0)6 - 48 07 21 43
f.j.a.vaneekeren@hhs.nl
In a society that is becoming increasingly diverse, the connecting role of sport is becoming more and more important.

Frank van Eekeren’s additional positions 

  • Senior Lecturer at Utrecht University (Department of Public Administration and Organisational Science) 

  • Member of the FC Utrecht Social Advisory Council 

  • Member of the new NOC*NSF Good Sport Governance Code Steering Committee 

  • Member of the Advisory Council of More2Win (social enterprise) 

  • Sport & Strategie Columnist 

Projects

Projects

Sport and Exercise Professor Platform

Sport and Exercise Professor Platform

The Sport and Exercise professor platform connects professors so they can exchange knowledge and collaborate. This leads to the efficient and effective development and use of knowledge. The collaboration also increases the quality and applicability of the sport research. Professors from all sport universities of applied sciences in the Netherlands form the core of the platform. Together, they want to increase the social impact of sport management research.
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Working together on a positive sports culture with 'Positivity Scores’

Working together on a positive sports culture with 'Positivity Scores’

A positive sports culture means a pleasant sports environment in which players and other participants have fun. Fun is the most important reason for starting and continuing to play sports. That is why achieving a positive sports culture is the goal of the 'Positivity Scores' programme. The Impact of Sport research group, together with students from the Sport Studies degree programme, is studying the effect of 'Positivity Scores' on behaviour on the sidelines of youth sport.
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Sport and Social Cohesion Lab: how sport connects

Sport and Social Cohesion Lab: how sport connects

European cities are changing fast and diversity is increasing. We therefore see a greater call for more social cohesion. Ensuring mutual social cohesion and connectedness is extremely important for the stability, safety and solidarity in cities. Sport can play a major role here: sport connects and brings people together, regardless of their background. The Impact of Sport Research Group is taking part in the European Sport and Social Cohesion Lab (SSCL) to research how sport can provide a positive contribution to social cohesion.
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The social value of community sports coaches

The social value of community sports coaches

Many cities and neighbourhoods employ community sports coaches: professionals whose overarching goal is to increase participation of residents in local sports. The municipality of The Hague has asked the Impact of Sport research group to map the social value of community sports coaches. The research report was presented to the municipality at the end of September 2021.
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The Hague Sportkwartier Living Labs

The Hague Sportkwartier Living Labs

The Impact of Sport research group is studying the connecting power of sports in the Den Haag Zuidwest district. We are working together with residents, students, local sports organisations and companies in 'living labs'. These are places in the neighbourhoods where we can fully leverage the creative energy of urban residents in an informal setting. We are experimenting in real-life settings with innovative sports activities and new forms of organisation and connection.
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Publications