Friday 24th February 2023


On the 15th and 16th of February 2023, EASE participated in the kick-off meeting of the SOPROS project, held by the German Sports University of Cologne, which is also involved in the SDE Pro Sports project.

SOPROS is a 3-years project, led by the German Sport University of Cologne. SOPROS stands for “Assessing, evaluating and implementing athletes’ social protection in Olympic sports”. This project is a deepening of the EMPLOYS project (“Understanding, Evaluating, and Improving Good Governance in the Employment Relations of Athletes in Olympic Sports in Europe”). EMPLOYS aim was to enhance good governance in sport organizations by formulating concrete recommendations regarding the employment relations of athletes in Olympic sport. SOPROS will focus on one of the dimensions tackled by the EMPLOYS project, which is the social protection of Olympic athletes. Throughout the project, the main aim will be to work for the implementation of concrete actions for athletes in the specific policy field of social protection.

The consortium gathers academic and policy partners:

  • The academic partners are the University of Rijeka (Croatia), Edge Hill University (UK), the Institute of sport governance (Poland) and Sport Evolution Alliance (Portugal).
  • The policy partners are the European Olympics Academies (EOA), EU Athletes and EASE.

The International Labor Organization (ILO) is also part of the project, with the status of associate partner, as the issues of social protection and decent work in sport interest them. Their expertise on social dialogue will be highly valuable.

Therefore, SOPROS aims at promoting “integrity and values in sport by assessing, evaluating and implementing athletes’ social protection in Olympic sports.” This purpose will be reach through the implementation of 4 specifics objectives:

  • Assessing and evaluating the current status of social protection for Olympic athletes in Europe, thanks to feedbacks provided by athletes, sport governing bodies and public authorities.
  • Implementing and drafting a “Manual for the implementation of athletes’ social protection”, thanks to a round of consultations led with European sport institutions and stakeholders.
  • Negotiating the potential implementation of a social protection system for Olympic athletes and gathering practical experience and viewpoints of the stakeholders of the project regarding the applied procedures and forms of collective negotiation of athletes’ social protection throughout the project.


EASE will help the evaluation and the negotiation phase, to help the implementation of social dialogue processes and represent sport governing bodies on the issues of social protection and employment relations of Olympic athletes.

EASE is very much looking forward to cooperating and contributing to this project, to bring the employers perspectives on the athlete social protection topics and deepen the social dialogue in the European sport sector.