The EU-funded project STARTING 11 co-led by the Amsterdam University of Applied Sciences and TW1N boosts the implementation of dual career support for athletes by developing the first European Dual Career Toolkit.

Dual career programmes depend on the quality of implementation at professional levels close to the athlete. However, more than one third of the EU member states self-rate their status and development of support arrangements as negative (European Commission, 2017). This is where the Erasmus+ Sport project STARTING 11 comes into play.

STARTING 11 aims to stimulate national, regional and local dual career practice in the EU. The project unites some of Europe’s leading institutions in dual career: Sportlycée Luxembourg, Talented Athlete Scholarship Scheme (TASS), German University Sports Federation (ADH), European Athlete Student (EAS), CREPS Toulouse, Amsterdam University of Applied Sciences (AUAS) and TW1N. In a multidisciplinary approach, these expert partners create a broad set of tools for various areas of athlete support targeting dual career service providers in sport, education and the labour market.



In the EU, the number of athletes in need of dual career services adds up to more than 120.000 in every Olympic cycle. From talented level and elite sport to the transition to post-athletic life, the quality of provided dual career support services are of vital importance to athletes. STARTING 11 (project duration: 1 January 2019 – 31 December 2021) caters to close the gap between policy, research and practice.

The project aims to facilitate the implementation of dual career services for key actors in dual career support, spanning institutions in sport (National Olympic Committees, high performance centres, sport federations, clubs, sport academies, player unions, lead dual career organisations), education (sport schools, universities, further education institutes, training institutes for sport coaches), and the labour market (job agencies, public employers of athletes, private employers of athletes).

Positioned between the EU Guidelines on Dual Careers of Athletes and local/regional/national dual career stakeholders wanting to adopt these guidelines, the project contributes to professionalize the European dual career environment. To achieve such wide-reaching quality implementation, a coordinated effort across european borders, cultures and nationalities is required. A monumental transformation for which humane, diversity-focused design and the creative use of technology can prove instrumental. Enter: The European Dual Career Toolkit.

The European Dual Career Toolkit will provide practitioners in these institutions with a broad set of self-applicable tools encompassing 3 main service areas of dual career support:

  • Manage tools will assist to build the political, theoretical and infrastructural know-how to implement and administrate dual career services as well as to efficiently communicate towards the most relevant dual career stakeholders.
  • Train tools will assist to prepare, sensitize and empower athletes by providing them with knowledge, inspiration and skills to successfully pursue their dual careers.
  • Counsel tools will assist to professionalize inter-personal counselling services to foster the coping, decision-making and planning ability of athletes in times of fundamental change and transition.

The freely accessible toolkit will be published in December 2021.





Needs analysis, idea creation and project design in cooperation with the Amsterdam University of Applied Sciences


Co-authoring of the Erasmus+ application


Participation in STARTING 11 as project co-lead

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