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  • Julie de Vaan

Increasing fun in sports (Dutch Football Association)

Updated: Aug 23


To make a positieve impact with sports and football, it's important that everyone can enjoy it, feels good and treats each another with respect. Therefore, we have been helping the Dutch Football Association to increase the enjoyment of football and to create a safe sports environment since 2013.


Reducing annoyance and aggression towards the arbitration

We investigate where annoyance, comments and aggression towards the arbitration in football comes from. Based on this, we work together with the KNVB to develop effective actions and interventions to reduce annoyance and aggression towards the referee and linesmen, including:

  • Checking the players' club passes

  • The introduction of the time penalty

  • Improving hospitality at clubs


Helping clubs to increase fun in football

Based on our knowledge and insights about satisfaction and enjoyment of the game, we can give football clubs specific advice on how they can best increase the fun in football. We help the KNVB to optimize the Match Affairs App, so that the correct data is collected. With this data, the KNVB can measure and evaluate the current situation at clubs, and give the right advice to increase fun.


One of the ways in which clubs can increase fun is, for example, by improving their hospitality. A pleasant reception, clean changing rooms and offering drinks during halftime make football players more positive about their opponents, which increases their enjoyment of the game.


Optimizing the use of rankings to increase fun

We investigate what young children do and don't like about football, and how rankings influence this. Based on these findings, we set guidelines on how to use rankings for pupils, so that they increase their fun in football. For example, the emphasis should not be on mutual competition, but mainly on personal development and progress with the team.


Increasing satisfaction about different types of football fields

We investigate why football players are or are not satisfied with the fields they play on. Based on this, we provide advice to increase satisfaction with different fields.


Specifically, we look at the introduction of a new type of field: the non-fill field. We test satisfaction with these fields, and set guidelines for improvements with regard to:

  • The fields themselves, aimed at producers and suppliers

  • Information provision and communication about the fields, aimed at associations, municipalities and clubs.



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