Opening new perspectives towards recognising and valuing competences

Opening new perspectives towards recognising and valuing competences

In 2015, EOSE has launched a new initiative on the ambitious and challenging topic of the recognition of informal and non-formal learning in and through sport.

We know we can do it only by working together since the recognition of non-formal learning requires political legitimacy, and acceptance as well as strong involvement of relevant political actors, not least employers and employees, not to forget the volunteers!

On the 5th of November 2015, we therefore gathered, in partnership with ISCA (the International Sport and Culture Association) 21 participants -from 11 countries representing 18 organisations- with the aim to consult and gather the views, needs and suggestions of a wide variety of European citizens and civil organisations.

On the occasion of this European round table on non-formal and informal learning we opened the debate and hear about some good practices. The event was indeed based on a mix of key note presentations, World Café style discussions and showcase of good practices.

The meeting was opened by Saska Benedicic Tomat and Carole Ponchon, Projects manager at respectively ISCA and EOSE, who welcomed the participants and stressed out the reasons for cooperation and the objectives of the day.

Keynote presentations were then given by Gary Grieve, Founder of Fill My Value Backpack and Ben Gittus, EOSE Director of Standards. Gary provided participants with a presentation on the meaning of non-formal and informal learning and its translation into concrete actions. Ben’s presentation focused on discussing recognition and validation of non-formal and informal learning as well as a state of play at EU level and existing tools.


Participants were then divided into four small working groups. They were in particular asked to think about the sector’s need and the objectives and aims we should target when developing a common strategy for the recognition of non-formal and informal learning.

Following this working session, concrete example of various good practices were then introduced by special guests. Mairit Pellinen talked about the example from the Finnish system, Patrick Perosa introduced the approach developed by the Sport Union of Slovenia, Peter Bakalar provided example from the University of Kosice in Slovakia and Martje Eyckmans highlighted the skills recognition system in the Flemish sport.


Participants were then invited again to sit in small group and imagine future cooperation. They were especially questioned by the moderators:

-          What would be the best scheme for the sector?

-          In practice how this could be implemented (cooperation at national level, cross-border level, European level)?

-          Which stakeholders should be involved?

The event ended up with commitments from EOSE and ISCA to work together in the next future to develop a strategy on this specific topic and a call for all interested stakeholders to get in touch

Indeed, this was only the starting point of a long journey that will lead us to a tailor-made feasible and relevant roadmap for future initiatives around this topic in the sector.

Our will is to work together with key stakeholders to identify adapted processes and methodologies that will allow the skills and experience acquired through sport to be given recognition and consideration by employers, formal education and civil society in general.


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EOSE – European Observatoire of Sport and Employment

A new wave for the sport and active leisure sector

Ensuring the right skills in the right place

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