The last ASOIF Council meeting of 2018 was overshadowed by the sudden passing of Patrick Baumann, FIBA Secretary General, IOC member and ASOIF Council member last month. ASOIF President Francesco Ricci Bitti paid tribute to Patrick Baumann’s humour, generosity, friendship and outstanding contributions to sport and the Olympic Movement. After the meeting, the Council members attended a memorial at Lausanne Cathedral.
The ASOIF Council announced that a new Governance Support and Monitoring Unit (GSMU) is now operational in a strive to help International Federations (IFs) steer towards better governance by 2020. The GSMU members gathered for the first time last week. Composed of the ASOIF President and three external experts, the GSMU aims to help IFs evolve from the adoption of principles and rules to tangible performances in good governance.
Francesco Ricci Bitti, who will chair the GSMU, said: “Our unit will be very pragmatic and focus on recommending concrete action, especially to IFs having difficulties introducing governance reforms. We will share with them best practice and offer solutions customised to their size, resources and context.”
Established in 2015, ASOIF’s Governance Task Force (GTF) helps IFs to promote and ensure a culture of good governance within their structures and has conducted governance reviews of each of its members. The second governance review, published in April this year, demonstrated that progress has been made but there remains much more to do in order to tackle some huge variations in IF governance. The new unit will help to close some of these gaps and has the declared objective of seeing at least 26 of the 28 full ASOIF members score 120 (out of a maximum of 200) or more in the governance assessment by April 2020, using the 2019-20 questionnaire.
The Council members were also updated on another important, ongoing ASOIF project. “The Future of Global Sport” looks at the speed of change impacting sport from political, social, technological and economic influences. The objective is to enable IFs to have an adequate understanding of what the future may look like when they take decisions with long-term impacts and ASOIF interviewed key people from the government sector, the business world and sport organisations. The project also examines the evolving role of IFs and will draw up recommendations how IFs can remain fit for purpose. ASOIF aims to publish the full report in early 2019.
The ASOIF Council also acknowledged the success of the third edition of the Summer Youth Olympic Games, which took place last month in Buenos Aires, Argentina. The Council agreed that operations went smoothly, the atmosphere was very friendly with good crowds watching the competitions and that the Urban Park concept proved to be an outstanding success. Progress reports were also received on the preparations for the Olympic Games in Tokyo 2020 and Paris 2024, both of which are advancing well.
The Council positively considered a development proposal from the International Judo Federation (IJF) and is ready to promote an initiative that will encourage refugee children and provide them greater opportunities to participate in different sports.
Finally, Council endorsed the Athletes’ Declaration, which was adopted by the IOC Session in October and agreed that ASOIF will raise awareness about this important document covering anti-doping, integrity, governance and discrimination among its 33 member federations.
The next Council meeting is scheduled to be held in Lausanne in February 2019.