Fourteen IOC commissions met this week in Lausanne. Addressing the commissions, IOC President Thomas Bach reaffirmed that the Olympic Movement can look ahead with confidence to a successful Olympic year in 2018, with the Olympic Winter Games PyeongChang 2018, the Youth Olympic Games Buenos Aires 2018 and the Olympism in Action Forum. He also outlined the main challenges facing the Olympic Movement with regard to ethics as well as reforming the world anti-doping system.
The IOC President kicked off the 8th International Athletes’ Forum by holding a three-hour Q&A session with more than 100 athletes. There was an in-depth and friendly discussion on many topics, including the current investigation into the failure of the anti-doping measures at the Olympic Winter Games Sochi 2014, gender equality, the future of athlete representation, the Olympic programme, and eGames/eSports. (See also under the ‘Other Olympic News’ section)
Meeting on 7 November, the IOC Executive Board (EB) discussed a number of issues including the upcoming Olympic Winter Games Games PyeongChang 2018 and the ongoing investigations by the Schmid and Oswald Commissions. The IOC EB also took the decision to suspend Frank Fredericks as an IOC Member.” Full text of the statement here.
President Bach attended the annual IF Forum organised by the SportAccord Convention, which took place under the theme, “Leading the way towards a sustainable agenda”. In his opening speech, the President outlined that Olympic Agenda 2020 places great emphasis on incorporating sustainability in all aspects of the Olympic Games and encourages all stakeholders of the Olympic Movement to include sustainability in its daily operations. He added that the Forum is an excellent opportunity to deepen partnership between the IOC and the IFs and to exchange best practices on sustainability.
Before the IF Forum, the IOC and the Global Association of International Sports Federations (GAISF) signed a ground-breaking Memorandum of Understanding (MoU), intended to further strengthen an already important partnership with the IFs. This MoU, which was signed by IOC President and GAISF President Patrick Baumann, is a direct result of Recommendation 13 of Olympic Agenda 2020, which called on the IOC to "Maximise synergies with Olympic Movement stakeholders". The new agreement between the IOC and GAISF provides a stable and sustainable framework for strengthened cooperation between the two organisations, with clarity on the roles and responsibilities of both bodies in relation to support to IFs and the organisation of multi-sport events. Full news release here.
With the Association of International Olympic Winter Sports Federations (AIOWF), whose President is IOC EB Member Gian-Franco Kasper, the preparations for the upcoming editions of the Olympic Winter Games, the follow up to the McLaren Report and the future Candidature Procedures for the Olympic Winter Games 2026 were discussed.
The President addressed the representatives of the IFs and international sports organisations based in Lausanne and the Canton of Vaud at their annual meeting, in the presence of the Mayor of Lausanne, Grégoire Junod, and Cantonal Councillor Philippe Leuba. He underlined the close and long-standing relations between the Olympic Capital, the Canton, the Swiss Confederation and the Olympic Movement, also mentioning the upcoming organisation of the Winter Youth Olympic Games Lausanne 2020.
Addressing the World Olympians Association (WOA) Executive Committee members who were meeting at the IOC headquarters in Lausanne, President Bach confirmed the IOC’s commitment to serving, protecting and supporting the athletes, and highlighted the close cooperation between the IOC, through its Athletes’ Commission, and the WOA.
With IOC Vice-Presidents Yu Zaiqing, Uğur Erdener and Anita L. DeFrantz, the President took part in a meeting to oversee the progress made in the Olympic House construction project.
At an information meeting for the new IOC Members, the Present met Karl Stoss, Baklai Temengil, Kristin Kloster Aasen, Khunying Patama Leeswadtrakul, Luis Mejía Oviedo, Neven Ilić, Sheik Khalid Muhammad Al Zubair, Jean-Christophe Rolland and Ingmar De Vos.
The President met IOC Members in France, Guy Drut, Tony Estanguet, who is also Co-President of the Paris 2024 Candidature Committee, and Jean-Christophe Rolland, with whom he discussed the next steps in organising the Olympic Games Paris 2024.
A number of meetings were also held with IOC Members, IF and NOC presidents and commission members.
President Bach met a delegation from the Dutch NOC accompanied by IOC Member Camiel Eurlings. The discussions focused on partnering in the context of Olympic Agenda 2020 recommendations. Closer cooperation between the IOC and the NOC to maximise the positive legacy of the Olympic Solidarity emergency fund was also discussed.
President Bach met the Polish Sports and Tourism Minister Witold Bańka, who represents Europe on the Executive Committee of the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA). The latest developments in the framework of the fight against doping and the progress in setting up the Independent Testing Authority were the main points of discussion. IOC Vice-President Uğur Erdener, who is also Chair of the IOC Medical and Scientific Commission, Irena Szewinska, IOC Member in Poland and Andrej Krasnicki, President of the Polish NOC, were also present.
The President also received Ukraine’s Mykola Podrezan, founder of the social project named “Earth – view from a wheelchair”. For almost two years, he crossed numerous countries along the international route of the Olympic Torch Relay of the Olympic Games Athens 2004. He was accompanied by IOC EB Member Sergey Bubka.
At the ceremony to award the Olympic Golden Rings for the best TV coverage of the Olympic Games Rio 2016, the IOC President presented the prize for Best Olympic Programme. An international jury chaired by IOC Member Anant Singh, a leading professional in the film and media industries and a member of the IOC Olympic Channel Commission, selected the winners, who were honoured in six categories. Press release and list of winners here.
During the Women and Sport Awards, the IOC celebrated six role models and change-makers in advancing women in and through sport; and recognised two outstanding coaches for their lifetime achievements. Finland’s Birgitta Kervinen was awarded the IOC’s World Women and Sport trophy for her tireless and long-standing efforts to promote gender equality in sport and society. The award was presented by the IOC President, in the presence of the Chair of the Women in Sport Commission and IOC Member Lydia Nsekera, at a gala organised at the Palais de Beaulieu in Lausanne. In addition to the world trophy, five continental trophies were also awarded to: Lidé Anne Ouoba Zoma (Burkina Faso) for Africa; Patricia Sangenis (Argentina) for America; the Japanese Women’s Tennis Federation for Asia; Androulla Vassiliou (Cyprus) for Europe; and Judy Otto (Palau) for Oceania.
Acknowledging the exceptional role of coaches in an athlete’s life, the IOC’s first-ever Coaches Lifetime Achievement Awards were given to retired Japanese swimming coach Kaneko Masako and retired American swimming coach Jon Urbanchek. The Awards were presented by the IOC President and the Chair of the Athletes’ Entourage Commission, IOC EB Member Sergey Bubka. Full press release here.
The IOC President met with a group of Young Change-Makers (formally Young Ambassadors) in Lausanne this week to discuss youth empowerment. The group of 18 young leaders – representing 4 continents and 15 countries – were inspired by their experiences at the Youth Olympic Games to leverage sport to bring about a positive change in their communities and each has received seed-funding from the IOC to deliver their own grass-roots projects.
On 9 November, the President welcomed children from schools of the Lausanne region as part of “Dare to do a job” day. He gave them a tour of his office and answered their questions on his schedule and role as President. This day is part of the awareness-raising programme run by several Swiss cantons to allow primary and secondary schoolchildren (aged 9 to 15) to find out about various professions.
Worldwide TOP Partner Visa unveiled three new wearable payment devices. As excitement builds for the Olympic Winter Games PyeongChang 2018, Visa has created NFC-enabled payment gloves, commemorative stickers and Olympic pins that allow fans and athletes to complete seamless and secure payments with a simple tap at any contactless-enabled terminal. Full press release here.
OTHER OLYMPIC NEWS
More than 100 athletes from around the world gathered at The Olympic Museum in Lausanne, for the 8th International Athletes’ Forum. The three-day event provided the global athletes’ network with an opportunity to feed back on the IOC Athletes’ Commission’s new “All In” Strategy, and to give their thoughts on how the Olympic Movement can better support athletes across the globe. Key outcomes from this Forum to help drive future reflections and actions included: A strong network of athletes’ commissions that supports and helps each other; Better communication to the worldwide athlete community that must be coherent and consistent; and Independence, transparency and credibility among athletes’ commissions. More info on www.olympic.org
On 9 November, the IOC has published new conclusions from the Oswald Commission hearings, which are being conducted in the context of the Sochi 2014 forensic and analytic doping investigations. As a result, the four Russian cross country skiers, Yuliia Ivanova, Alexey Petukhov, Evgeniya Shapovalova and Sochi 2014 three-time silver medallist Maksim Vylegzhanin, have been sanctioned. The case opened against a fifth athlete has been closed without a sanction. More hearings concerning other athletes will be held over the next few weeks. Full press release here.
The IOC revealed the first 25 Athlete Role Models (ARMs) who will gather in the Argentinian capital next October to mentor and support the next generation of young athletes who will compete at the Youth Olympic Games Buenos Aires 2018. Sporting legends have been selected by the IFs in the 32 sports that appear on the Olympic programme at next year’s Youth Olympic Games. The list includes many well-known names in the world of sport, including Olympic and world champions, with more to be revealed closer to the Games. Full press release here.
In Brisbane (Australia) on 6 and 7 November, a joint INTERPOL-IOC Law Enforcement Training to strengthen capacity for the Queensland Police discussed match-fixing and investigations into competition manipulation, evidence evaluation and information exchange between police and sports organizations. The training course was followed by a one-day partnership development meeting designed to bring together high-level actors to protect the integrity of competitions during 2018 Commonwealth Games in Australia. The meetings were held in cooperation with the Queensland Police, as part of Australia’s preparations for hosting the 2018 Commonwealth Games. Additional support was provided by SportRadar, which leverages sports data to protect the integrity of competitions. More info here.
“Days of Truce”, the Official Film of the Olympic Games Rio 2016, directed by Breno Silveira, had its world premiere on 3 November, as part of the Tokyo International Film Festival. Popole Misenga of the Refugee Olympic Team, who features in the film, travelled from Rio, where he trains, to attend the exclusive screening outside competition season. “Days of Truce” is an original portrait of the Brazilian experience in hosting the Games and a powerful manifesto that explores how the Olympic values are relevant in our modern society. This documentary is the story of the Olympic Summer Games 2016, focusing on the experiences of people from all walks of life who contributed to their success: from the taxi driver to the star athlete, from the dancer at the Olympic Opening Ceremony to Popole, a member of the first Refugee Olympic Team. Full press release here.
Skateistan, Help Age International Tanzania, and Pro Sport Development are the latest winners of the IOC’s Sport and Active Society grants. Worth USD 25,000 each, these development grants are awarded to grassroots organisations running effective sport for all programmes in different regions across the world. Full press release here.
The IOC’s Olympic Studies Centre (OSC) has launched the 2018/2019 edition of the Advanced Research Grant Programme. The main objective of this programme is to promote advanced academic research with a humanities or social sciences perspective on priority topics identified annually by the IOC. Find the full list of 14 topics for which academic research is welcome and more details on the rules of the programme at www.olympic.org/studies.
international sportS FEDERATIONS
The International Association Football Federation (FIFA) and FIFPro, the international players’ syndicate, have concluded a wide-ranging six-year cooperation agreement to strengthen relationships between the two organisations and improve the governance of professional football worldwide. Additionally, an agreement has been reached between FIFA, FIFPro, the European Club Association and the World Leagues Forum under the umbrella of FIFA’s newly formed Football Stakeholders Committee, which includes confederations, member associations and professional football stakeholders. Full press release here.
Gabriel Tuscher is a Swiss-born hockey player and coach who has lived in Belgium for the past 10 years and is heavily involved in Brussels-based Wellington Hockey Club, and whose heart lies in the African nation of Burkina Faso, a country he has lived in and visited regularly for the past 20 years. Tuscher is also an advocate for using hockey as a tool to help youngsters in developing nations to improve their health, education and life chances. Through his project “Wellington for Burkina Faso”, he aims to get Belgian hockey clubs on board as sponsors of clubs in Burkina Faso. Under his plans, the Belgian clubs would provide advice, support and financial assistance to their adopted club. This project is one of many such initiatives across the world which mirror the aims of the International Hockey Federation (FIH)’s 10-year Hockey Revolution strategy aimed at making hockey a global game that inspires the next generation. Full details here.
The International Swimming Federation (FINA) has published the 2017 Development Activity Report, presenting the main actions undertaken from January until September 2017. A total of 28 FINA schools (swimming, open water, water polo, artistic swimming, diving and high diving) were organised and supported by FINA in this period, enabling close to 700 participants from 50 FINA National Federations to train and certify to become officials. In addition, 56 FINA clinics were organised in the first part of 2017 to provide basic training to coaches and officials of all levels, from beginners to advanced participants. More than 2,000 participants have benefited from these programmes to develop their skills and knowledge. The full report is available on www.fina.org.
Five legends of the game were inducted into the World Rugby Hall of Fame on 10 November at a special ceremony in Rugby, England, to celebrate their lives and careers in the game. The new inductees are Felipe Contepomi (Argentina), Al Charron (Canada), Rob Andrew (England), Fabien Pelous (France) and Phaidra Knight (USA). This year’s induction ceremony coincided with the start of the Rugby World Cup 2019 trophy tour, which kicked off in Rugby town. The tour will take the famous Webb Ellis Cup to no fewer than 18 countries between now and the start of the RWC 2019. Full details here.
The International Shooting Sport Federation (ISSF) Executive Committee met in Munich (Germany) on 6 November. Agenda items included the reorganisation of championships; rules; stakeholder inclusion; gender equality; and the allocation of quota places for the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020. Details here.
In addition, the ISSF Academy, on behalf of the Sudanese NOC, organised a technical course for coaches in Khartoum from 15 to 22 October. Placed under the auspices of Olympic Solidarity, this course brought together 34 future coaches from across the country, including four women. This course allowed the NOC and the national shooting federation to develop a sustainable coaching structure for future shooters. More info here.
World Sailing has launched its Sustainability Agenda 2030, which sets out the world governing body's ambitious commitment to help create a better world through sport. This Agenda was presented at the Sustainability Forum at the 2017 Annual Conference in Puerto Vallarta (Mexico) by Mike Golding (see photo), World Sailing Sustainability Commission Chairman, and Dan Reading, World Sailing Sustainability Programme Manager. This Agenda includes a series of challenging targets for the sport across technical standards, events, training, venues and facilities, members and participation. In addition, this Agenda supports the IOC’s Sustainability Strategy and shows World Sailing's contribution to the United Nations 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. Full details here.
Twenty-one young athletes from 14 developing National Ski Associations have been participating since 15 October in a 30-day training camp at the Stubai, Hintertux and Pitztal glaciers in Austria. They are supported by experts from the International Ski Federation (FIS). As part of the FIS Development Programme, the training camp in Austria is conducted on a yearly basis to provide an opportunity for athletes to participate in structured and professional training sessions. The second period of the camp takes place from 19 November to 16 December 2017. More info here.
NATIONAL Olympic COMMITTEES
The Mongolian NOC signed an MoU with the Russian NOC at the ANOC General Assembly in Prague (Czech Republic). The agreement was signed by NOC President Demchigjav Zagdsuren (l.) and his Russian counterpart, Alexander Zhukov (r.). Some of the points covered in this agreement were the development of bilateral cooperation; the promotion of the fundamental principles and values of Olympism; and the development of mass and high performance-level sport. The two presidents also discussed educational exchanges between the two NOCs.
In cooperation with the gymnastics federation, the Uruguayan NOC organised a course for coaches in the city of Canelones. Organised as part of the Olympic Solidarity technical courses programme, this course brought together 24 coaches, who received the Level 1 diploma of the International Gymnastics Federation (FIG). Young gymnasts took part in practical and theory sessions as part of this course, and were thanked by the NOC and the Federation. More details here.
For the first time in Venezuela, coaches with over 10 years’ experience can opt for a university qualification (TSU) in sport. The first-phase module of this Train the Trainers programme recently came to an end. The programme was created by the Venezuelan NOC thanks to Olympic Solidarity and the IOC. The awarding of the first diplomas took place thanks to a teaching agreement between the NOC and the Lara Andrés Eloy Blanco Territorial Polytechnic University (UPTAEB).
ORGANISING COMMITTEES FOR THE Olympic GAMES
On 6 November, the official uniform that will be worn by the PyeongChang 2018 “Passion Crew” was unveiled at a special launch in the South Korean capital of Seoul. Some 1,000 volunteers attended the event at the COEX Auditorium, along with the President of the PyeongChang 2018 Organising Committee (POCOG) Lee Hee-beom, Vice-Minister of Culture, Sports and Tourism Roh Tae-kang, and Vice-Minister of Interior and Safety Shim Bo-kyun. "Passion Crew" is the collective name chosen for the PyeongChang 2018 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games workforce, including staff, volunteers, cast members of the Opening and Closing Ceremonies, security staff and contractors involved in the delivery of PyeongChang 2018. In total, that amounts to around 87,000 people (of whom 56,000 will be working during the Olympic Winter Games and 31,000 during the Paralympic Winter Games). Full press release here.
The official Olympic Winter Games PyeongChang 2018 app was launched on 8 November. Available in Korean, Chinese, English, French and Japanese, the app will bring all the latest news and information on the XXIII Olympic Winter Games to sports fans around the world. More details here.
More than 40 medical specialists from IFs and world leading experts addressed important topics regarding elite athlete and global health during an ASOIF workshop, held from 7 to 8 November in Lausanne. Organised by the Association of Summer Olympic International Federations (ASOIF)’s Medical & Science Consultative Group (AMSCG) and opened by ASOIF President Francesco Ricci Bitti, the event had the following objectives: to establish priorities for improving athlete health; to encourage IF medical chairs to leverage their sport to promote global health; to identify practical strategies to address the health priorities; and to encourage IF collaboration. Participants heard IF case studies and learnt from experts from the World Health Organisation (WHO), universities and the IOC which presented its new toolkit for Olympic Movement to safeguard athletes from harassment and abuse in sport. Full details here.