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IOC Executive Board reviews progress of governance reforms, decides on further action

IOC/Greg Martin
18 Jul 2018
Olympic News, IOC News
During its meeting held in Lausanne today, the International Olympic Committee (IOC) Executive Board (EB) was provided with a thorough progress report about recent governance reforms within the organisation and decided to take further steps in order to remain fit for purpose. 

A year ago, the world-renowned International Institute for Management Development (IMD) presented its research into good governance at the IOC and issued a set of recommendations, aimed at helping the IOC to build its resilience and leadership position, fulfill its mission to society in its fullest and serve as a best-in-class example in a global arena in need of positive governance examples.

In particular, the IMD made 22 recommendations to improve structures and processes for governance in the more immediate term, as well as 11 recommendations for longer-term transformation of governance practices, to support the IOC on its path to continued governance improvement. In addition, the IMD identified seven dilemmas that the IOC will need to face in the next 10 years to ensure that its governance practices keep pace with its evolving role and increasing societal expectations.

Key achievements

Having followed up on a large number of these recommendations during the last year, key achievements by the IOC include:

  • awareness training on ethical matters delivered to all IOC Members and employees;

  • an information programme on ethical matters, including conflicts of interest for all IOC commissions;

  • strengthening of the Ethics Commission with the review of the Statutes and the Rules of Procedure and the appointment of a new independent Chair;

  • the creation of a new HR Committee;

  • the appointment of a formal EB secretary;

  • the improvement of the preparation process and information package for EB meetings;

  • the approval by the EB of the 25 recommendations to improve gender equality in the Olympic Movement; and

  • the review of all the commissions, with a significant number of external IOC experts to provide appropriate support to IOC Members.

Pierre-Olivier Beckers-Vieujant, IOC Member and Chair of the IOC's Audit Committee, said: "One year after publication of the IMD review, the IOC has implemented the majority of the recommendations, and other important actions are work in progress. Olympic Agenda 2020 and support from the IOC's Ethics Commission have been a catalyst for several reforms. As governance remains an evolving process, the IOC Executive Board today decided on more measures to further strengthen its own effectiveness."

EB members to undergo self-assessment and regular information session

Following the model of other best-in-class leading organisations, the EB decided to conduct self-assessments and regular information sessions for each of its members, aimed at optimising their skills and expertise to effectively face current and future societal, political and technological governance challenges.

Ongoing initiatives

Other significant projects have also started to address the remaining recommendations within the next two years. They include:

  • a review, by the Ethics Commission, of the rules on conflicts of interest for the Olympic Movement to be presented to the IOC EB and then ultimately to the IOC Session next year;

  • the contract management and procurment improvement projects, as part of the Operational Excellence Programme, which will further improve all matters related to suppliers' due diligence, sustainable procurement and prevention of conflicts of interest;

  • the implementation of recommendation 27 of Olympic Agenda 2020 related to the basic principles of good governance across the Olympic Movement;

  • the implementation of the People Management 2020 programme, which will improve gender equity and succession planning;

  • the new digital strategy to further improve transparency of the IOC towards its external stakeholders; and

  • cooperation with a specialised company to help continue the work around human rights alignment and compliance with UN guiding principles on human rights.

A further follow-up report on the IMD recommendations by the IOC will be presented to the Executive Board during its meeting in December.

The IOC remains committed to being a strong values-based organisation and a leader in the field of sport, with the aim of being a model of governance quality.

Visit to learn more about how the IOC works to ensure integrity within its own structures, across the Olympic Movement and at sporting competitions.

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