According to European Commission, social innovations are new ideas that meet social needs, create social relationships and form new collaborations. These innovations can be products, services or models addressing unmet needs more effectively. The European Commission’s objective is to encourage market uptake of innovative solutions and stimulate employment.
The Commission’s actions on social innovation stem from the Innovation Union initiative (2010) and of the Social Investment Package (2013). These actions facilitate the inducement, uptake and scaling-up of social innovation solutions. The main objectives are:
– promoting social innovation as a source of growth and jobs
– sharing information about social innovation in Europe
– supporting innovative entrepreneurs and mobilising investors and public organisations.
Sport innovation is dynamic and affects areas such as sport management, emergence of new sports, social and community-based development in sport. Social innovation arises when sport organizations, groups or individuals (such as athletes and coaches) are faced with social issues that requires new and creative solutions. In this way, social innovation encourages solutions to complex social issues in sport contexts.
Social issues as an aspect of sport innovation concern grassroots and ‘sport for all programs’ with an overall aim of contributing to greater social justice and equality in sport. This dynamic aspect of sport innovation includes opportunities for new marginalized social groups to participate and compete in sport, for example, through the introduction and creation of events such as the Paralympic Games, The Special Olympics or the ‘Homeless World Cup’ in football.
With regard to this insight, SPINVET project seeks to address the following identified needs of VET for sport field in social innovation at the EU level:
– Current curricula implemented by VET institutions responsible for VET of sports professionals are insufficient to train qualified sports managers to meet the needs of the sports labor market.
– Social innovation in sports is a relatively new but rapidly developing field. There is no innovative course curriculum on social innovation that VET institutions in the field of sport can apply.
– Trainers/lecturers responsible for VET of sports managers need innovative educational resources on social innovation.
– The social innovation competencies of the sports professionals in the labor market are not sufficient.
– Sports professionals in the labor market need open and digital learning platforms and training resources to improve their social innovation knowledge, skills and competences.
With this scope, the overall objectives of the project are to contribute to smart, sustainable and inclusive growth in Europe by;
– supporting professional development of VET trainers/lecturers in sport field and
– developing social innovation competencies for sports professionals working in sport organizations (non-profit and for profit).
The specific aims of the project are:
– to develop a course curriculum that addresses the challenges faced by sports managers in the development and delivery of innovative products, services and processes for the sports sector in order to contribute the solving of social problems and
– to improve the social innovation competencies of sports managers with digital, open and innovative learning platform and training resources.
The target groups of the project who benefit from the project products and took part in the projects’ activities are as follows:
1) Direct target group: sports managers, sport professionals, VET trainers/lecturers in the sport field, partner organizations and their staff
2) Indirect target group: Sport organizations, VET organizations/institutions, universities, training providers, trainers/lecturers of target organizations
Intellectual Outputs (IOs)
IO-1: A Course curriculum on social innovation in the field of sport
IO-2: A Gamification based interactive learning platform for sports managers
Work Packages (WPs):
WP-1: Project management and implementation activities
WP-2: Research activities (collection of evidence-based data via informal way, field research activities, focus group meetings)
WP-3: Development of a course curriculum on social innovation in the field of sport and development of a gamification based interactive learning platform for sports managers
WP-4: Online pilot scheme for sports managers to test the interactive learning platform (including short-term learning activity for VET trainers in the sport field)
WP-5: Reporting (Progress and Final Report) and Dissemination Activities