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Beyond the bright lights of the stadiums

UEFA general secretary Gianni Infantino tells the UEFA•direct publication about UEFA's education programmes and the benefits they will bring the European football community.

Participants on the new UEFA CFM course
Participants on the new UEFA CFM course ©UEFA.com

In his editorial in the latest edition of the official UEFA publication UEFA•direct, UEFA general secretary Gianni Infantino talks about UEFA's education programmes aimed at helping national football associations share knowledge and develop their governance.

For football to remain the beautiful game, it must be governed by people who are equal to the ever more complex task. To this end, UEFA has created a series of education programmes specially designed with the national associations, and the professionalism of European football governance, in mind.

Since 2004, the KISS project (Knowledge & Information Sharing Scenario) has aimed to give UEFA's member association staff opportunities for professional development and to exchange best practice through interactive seminars and an online platform.

UEFA has since started to build on these foundations by designing a new range of courses in keeping with the philosophy of the KISS programme and in collaboration with world-renowned academic partners.

The results are the UEFA certificate and diploma in football management (UEFA CFM and DFM) and the European team sports associations' joint Executive Master in European Sport Governance (MESGO). These pioneering courses' first intake of participants began in September, so I take this opportunity to wish them a successful, rewarding experience.

To cover all angles, UEFA has also launched a research grant programme to support the work of researchers in the field of European football, to ensure it remains the No1 sport it is today.

These new courses have all been designed to enable participants to work and study in parallel, to complement their day-to-day professional activities and to meet their unique needs. They incorporate state-of-the-art teaching methods, including distance learning, and should help our member associations' staff to find fulfilment in their careers as well as giving them academic recognition of their achievements, be it in the form of a certificate, a diploma or even an internationally recognised master's degree.

The knowledge acquired and experience shared within the networks established by these programmes can only be of benefit to our member associations and I look forward to seeing everyone's efforts bear fruit on pitches all over Europe.