01.09.2013 - Social and Human Sciences Sector

Fight against Doping: representatives from more than 170 States expected in Paris in September

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Four months after the adoption of a roadmap to clean up sport and make it accessible for all at the 5th World Conference Ministers of Sports in Berlin (Germany), representatives from 174 States Parties to the International Convention against Doping in Sport are expected at UNESCO Headquarters in Paris, from 19 to 20 September 2013, for a meeting which will be the occasion to establish a world picture of the measures taken, at the national level, to fight against the plague of doping.

Responsible for ensuring the implementation of the International Convention against Doping in Sport, adopted by the General Conference of UNESCO in October 2005, the Conference of States Parties to this Convention will meet, for the fourth time, at UNESCO Headquarters in Paris, on 19 and 20 September 2013.

This Conference feeds several objectives, including to be a platform for discussion and debate on public policies in the fight against doping, ensuring harmonization, coordination and effectiveness of the global legal and policy framework against this scourge.

In addition to the 174 countries that have ratified the Convention as of 1 August 2013, all Member States of UNESCO have been invited to participate in this meeting. The World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) will also attend in an advisory capacity, together with several UNESCO key partners in the global fight against doping such as the International Olympic Committee (IOC), the International Paralympic Committee (IPC), the Council of Europe (CoE), the Intergovernmental Committee for Physical Education and Sport (CIGEPS) and various intergovernmental and international sports organizations, which will participate as observers.

Four months after the 5th World Conference of Ministers of Sport which gathered representatives from more than 130 countries in Berlin (Germany), in May 2013, this session of the Conference of States Parties will offer a unique opportunity to ascertain the policies and programs developed so far by governments at the national level.

Through a system for monitoring the Convention established by UNESCO - which was the first of its kind in monitoring and evaluation of United Nations conventions - reports by country will be presented. Based on an online questionnaire and an electronic analysis tool ("Anti-Doping Logic"), this system allows identifying strengths and weaknesses, country by country, for detection, deterrence and prevention of doping in sport. It also helps to ensure that the measures taken by governments having ratified the Convention are in accordance with its provisions.

At the previous session of the Conference, held in November 2011, the analysis of the responses provided by the 99 States who completed the online questionnaire made it possible to consider that 74% of them were in conformity with the Convention. To encourage monitoring of the implementation of the Convention, the Conference has decided that only States that respond to the questionnaire can now benefit from the Fund for the Elimination of Doping in Sport. The Conference has the authority to supervise this Fund which has to its credit more than $3.2 million USD.

As of 1 August 2013, the analysis of answers given to the questionnaire revealed a contrast between on the one hand measures taken at the national level, and on the other, the multiplication of scandals related to doping during the past months. In spite of a very encouraging progression of the States having satisfied the Convention’s requirements (69% of the countries having answered the online survey), the measures taken by the latter seem indeed still far from the expected effectiveness. The answers provided by the governments however give very interesting indications on the fact that the needs related to education and training of sportsmen, sportswomen and coaches need to be taken more into account.

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