Sport in general, and community sports in particular, have been perceived as potential rich contexts for reaching ‘harder-to-reach’ young people at-risk of social exclusion. However, from an international comparative perspective, community sports’ diversity and ‘fluidity’ , in terms of organizational formats and aims, remain under-researched . Important to note, is that one overall community sport format does not seem to exist in Flanders. A basic question has not been addressed: Why are there differences? And how are such organizational differences related to objectives in relation to social inclusion and emancipation . Additionally, more insights are required in the specific role and pedagogical practices of paid professionals in community sport settings. For example, issues regarding (de-)professionalization and (in-)formalization have not been addressed in relation to community sports. The proposed research aims at answering three central questions: (1) Which community sport organizational model is perceived to be most effective in reaching and working, from an emancipatory perspective, with disadvantaged youths?; (2) what are the roles and socio-pedagogical practices of paid professionals in community sport settings?; and (3) how do community sport provisions create ‘free space’ for the development of social innovative bottom-up practices? For this research, we will use a multiple-case study design in which multiple data sources will be used .