- Georg Anders (Germany)
- Mait Arvisto deceased (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 its first years (2001-2006), Otmar Weiss served as President and Georg Anders as Secretary General. In 2004 the European Journal for Sport and Society (ejss) was established and has since been edited on behalf of the eass. The first Editor-in-Chief, Dieter H. Jütting (2004-2009), was followed by Bernd Schulze (2009-2011), Siegfried Nagel (2011-2014), Ansgar Thiel (2014-2018), and Adam B. Evans (2018-). At the General Assemblies, which take place every two years, the following eass Presidents were elected in accordance with the Articles of Association: Otmar Weiss (2006-2008), Georg Anders (2008-2010), Nicola Porro (2010-2012), Hannu Itkonen (2012-2014), Jeroen Scheerder (2014-2016), Siegfried Nagel (2016-2018), Remco Hoekman (2018-2021), and Laila Susanne Ottesen (2021-). The following members were elected as Secretaries General: Joachim Mrazek (2006-2008), Andrzej Pawlucki (2008-2012), Kim Wickman (2012-2016), Hanna Vehmas (2016-2021), and Anna Vilanova Soler (2021-).
The idea for founding the eass originated from two key factors. 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 accession of ten new member states to the European Union in 2004, most of them Eastern European countries, posed a number of challenges not only for politics and the economy, but also for sport and social sciences. This process of enlargement concerned not only the Eastern European countries, but all of Europe. In an ethnically diverse population, sport can facilitate cultural dialogue. Hence, the exploration of sport’s sociocultural, sociopolitical and socioeconomic functions has become a task of increasing importance for the sociology of sport.
In this context, new perspectives for scientific orientation and research activities (e.g., cross-cultural studies) have evolved on the European scene. It is essential for the sociology of sport to investigate the development and differentiation of sport over time and across different societies. The eass conferences, which are held annually, help shape the discipline, and the scientists involved contribute to building international networks and relationships in the forefront of the field. This facilitates both the circulation of knowledge, as well as international research collaboration. Such bridges are vital for sparking new initiatives and for creating a larger scientific community.
According to its Articles of Association 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.