Tirana, Albania – The S2ABC European Standard Course on Sport Administration commenced last week in Tirana, Albania, with a successful Induction Event gathering a diverse group of 40 participants from 11 countries across Western Balkans, EU, UK and Turkey.

The S2ABC project is funded by the Erasmus+ Sport programme “Capacity Building in the Field of Sport” and aims to enhance the skills of sport administrators and build capacity of sport organisations in the Western Balkans through innovative training and development activities. A unique partnership of two organisations from the European Union and five from the Western Balkans, including three National Olympic Committees and three universities has been gathered to develop and deliver two fit-for-purpose European Courses on Sport Administration using a blended learning approach.

The purpose of the Induction Event, running from 27 to 29 March 2024 was to officially launch the European Standard Course on Sport Administration, and for the participants to get to know each other and be ready to effectively engage in the upcoming 3 online modules which will be delivered in May, June and July of 2024, and a graduation event scheduled to take place in September 2024 in Montenegro.

The event was inaugurated at the Sports University of Tirana (SUT), where attendees were welcomed by Kirstie Simpson, S2ABC Course Director and President of EOSE, the coordinator of the project, Aurélien Favre, Executive Director of EOSE, Prof. Arben Kaçurri, Director of the Sport Research Institute of SUT, and Mr. Endrit Hoxha, Deputy Minister for Sports from the Ministry of Education and Sport of Albania. Their messages underscored the course’s objectives to foster a collaborative learning environment and strengthen the sport administration sector. Following an introduction about the rationale, purpose and structure of the Course as well as ice breaker games, participants were able to take part in various sport activities (archery, basketball, volleyball and table tennis) with all the other attendees.

On the second day of the event, participants had the opportunity to engage in a series of activities including a tour of the Sport University of Tirana facilities, and a visit to the National Olympic Committee of Albania, where they were introduced to the NOC’s sport strategy and recent projects by Mr. Fidel Ylli, President of NOC of Albania. Participants were also able to hear about the realities and strategic plans of the Albanian Volleyball Federation and Albanian Tennis Federation, linking the visit with the first online module of the course on the topic of strategy. This was complemented by informative sessions on the Sport University of Tirana (SUT) and the Albanian sport system, led by Prof. Agron Kasa, Rector of the University, Prof. Arben Kaçurri, Director of the Sport Research Institute, and Holtion Orhani, researcher and lecturer at the same institution. The day concluded with a walking tour of Tirana.

The programme also featured interactive group work sessions focused on critical areas of sport administration, such as strategy, leadership, marketing, and communication. Group activities, feedback and reflective sessions facilitated by Kirstie Simpson and Aurélien Favre encouraged participants to share their wide-ranging experience in the sector and to create links and synergies between them.

As the event concluded, the wrap-up session paved the way for the upcoming online modules, future steps and a collective journey towards excellence in sport administration.

The S2ABC Induction Event in Tirana marks the beginning of a transformative journey for sport administration professionals across Europe. The programme’s innovative approach to learning, combined with the commitment of its participants, promises to foster a future of international collaboration, impactful leadership and strategic prowess in sport administration.

“We were truly delighted to bring together such an enthusiastic group of sport administrators from various countries and organisations for the official launch of our S2ABC Standard Course on Sport Administration. With a strong focus on Strategy, Leadership, and Communication, this course is not just about learning; it is an opportunity for participants to meet, share insights and learn from each other, fostering a vibrant community of professionals. The commitment and engagement we have seen have been extraordinary, setting a promising tone for our first online module on Strategy. Additionally, the exceptional hospitality provided by the Sports University of Tirana has been instrumental in making this event a success, enhancing the overall experience for everyone involved.” 

– said Aurélien Favre, Executive Director of EOSE.

One of the participants of the course gave the following testimonial after the event:

“I am deeply thankful and blessed to be part of the S2ABC European Standard Course on Sport Administration. The impressions of our initial meeting in Albania during the 3-day Induction Event are nothing but great. Meeting participants from diverse backgrounds and countries was not only enriching but also inspiring. Despite our differences, we were bound by a common feature – a shared passion and commitment to sports. I must compliment the organizers for their outstanding work. Every aspect of the event was greatly planned, allowing us to fully engage without any distractions. A special thanks to the Sports University of Tirana for hosting the event and making us feel comfortable. The discussions, games and collaborative activities we had served as a perfect introduction to the upcoming online modules, which will offer great knowledge and expertise. In the sports sector, it’s crucial for us, as working and volunteering staff, to equip ourselves with the right skills and knowledge. Recognizing the significant impact sports can have, it’s essential for everyone in the field to continuously enhance their abilities and seek opportunities for professional growth. This not only helps us individually but also benefits the entire sector. Such dedication is truly motivating and inspiring, driving us to make a meaningful difference in the industry.”


  • European Observatoire of Sport and Employment (EOSE) – Coordinator
  • Université Catholique de Louvain (UCL) – Belgium
  • National Olympic Committee of North Macedonia (NOC Macedonia)
  • Sport University of Tirana (SUT) – Albania
  • National Olympic Committee of Albania (NOC Albania)
  • University of Pristina – Faculty of Sport and Physical Education – Kosovo
  • National Olympic Committee of Montenegro (NOC Montenegro)


Mr Aurélien Favre – EOSE Executive Director – Click here

Mr Wojciech Waśniewski – EOSE Projects & Research Coordinator – Click here