Friday, May 4, 2012

Me in the FT on Sport Governance

I have a piece on sports governance  in today's Financial Times in a special feature on the Business of Sport 2012. Here is an excerpt:
In March, the Council of Europe became the latest body to raise concerns about nefarious activities overshadowing the world of sport.

In a stark warning, the intergovernmental body said that “doping, corruption and match fixing [are] growing insidiously”, adding that “other problems are also undermining the world of sport and tarnishing its image”. In response to such threats to the integrity of competition, the council cited the need to “improve governance machinery within sports institutions”.

A list in support of the council’s claims gives little regard to sport or geography. In the US, American football coaches have been accused of paying “bounties” to reward players for injuring opponents, Formula One motor racing’s dirty laundry has been held up to public view in a German court in a trial over alleged bribery, the Turkish football league has been embroiled in a match-fixing scandal, baseball and cycling continue to be dogged by accusations of drug-enhanced athletes, while a formal review of cricket’s international governing body found its “management and ethics” not to be “worthy of the sport”. And so it goes on.

The most highly charged accusations, however, are against football, where Fifa, the international governing body, has faced allegations ranging from the buying of votes in a recent leadership election to corruption in the awarding of the 2018 and 2022 World Cups and even the embezzlement of donations intended for Haitian earthquake victims.
Have a look and please feel free to comment.


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