- Georg Anders (Germany)
- Mait Arvisto (Estonia)
- Gyongyi Földesi (Hungary)
- Jerzy Kosiewicz (Poland)
- Zbigniew Krawczyk (Poland)
- Michal Lenartowicz (Poland)
- Joachim Mrazek (Germany)
- Otmar Weiss (Austria)
The European Association for Sociology of Sport (eass) was founded on November 16, 2001 in Vienna. During the period of consolidation (2001-2006) Otmar Weiss served as President. In 2004 the European Journal for Sport and Society (ejss) was established, and is edited on behalf of the eass. At the General Assembly, which takes place every two years, the following eass presidents were elected in accordance with the statutes: Otmar Weiss (2006-2008), Georg Anders (2008-2010), Nicola Porro (2010-2012), Hannu Itkonen (2012-2014), Jeroen Scheerder (2014-2016).
The foundation of the eass stemmed from two main ideas. Firstly, up to that time there had been no organization representing experts in the area of sport and social sciences on the European scene. Secondly, the integration of ten new member states to the European Union, most of them from former Eastern Europe, posed a number of challenges not only for politics and economy, but also for sport and the social sciences. Not only the Eastern European countries, but all of Europe is in the course of the process of enlargement, where cultural dialogue is a significant bi-product, a natural laboratory. In Europe, with its ethnically and/or culturally diverse population, the role of sport as a vehicle for cultural dialogue is of particular interest. With the increasing importance of sport the exploration of its sociocultural, sociopolitical, socioeconomic etc. functions and problems is becoming an ever more essential task for the sociology of sport.
In this context new perspectives in scientific orientation and research activities (e.g. cross-cultural studies) on the European scene have evolved. It is important that the sociology of sport investigates the development and differentiation of sport over time and across different societies. The eass conferences, which are held annually, have an identity formation potential both for the discipline itself and for the participants. The latter contribute to forming international networks and relationships in the forefront of the field, which facilitate both circulation of knowledge, and international collaboration in research. Such bridges are essential for sparkling new initiatives and for creating a larger scientific community.
According to its statutes the eass is a non-profit organization with the purpose of promoting social sciences and social research in sport at the European level and to offer scientific advice to European institutions such as the EU and the Council of Europe.