Asser International Sports Law Blog

Our International Sports Law Diary
The Asser International Sports Law Centre is part of the T.M.C. Asser Instituut

[Advanced professional training] Responding to human rights abuse in sport: Safe, effective & appropriate investigation - 5-6 March

Register now for the second edition of our advanced professional training and learn how to respond in a safe, appropriate, and effective way to cases of human rights abuse in sport. 

In recent years, the world of sport has seen a rise in reports of cases of emotional, psychological, physical, and sexual abuse. Sport has often struggled to respond in a safe, effective and appropriate way to these cases.  This has, at best, led to missed opportunities to improve and strengthen prevention mechanisms.  At worst, it has caused retraumatisation and additional harm to those affected. 

This professional training uses real life challenges from past investigations to provide insight into how (not) to respond to reports and allegations of sport-related cases of abuse. It will provide you with tools and knowledge on how to deal with abuse cases while protecting those affected, complying with human rights, and upholding the integrity of sport.

Register HERE

Widespread abuse in sports
The last five years have seen a huge uptick in reports of cases of emotional psychological, physical and sexual abuse in sport. All over the world, across different sports, non-recent and recent cases have come to light: abuse allegations in Dutch gymnastics and US gymnastics, the abuse of female basketball players in Mali, systematic abuse of child athletes in Japan, the abuse of young boys within the English football, or children in other grass-roots sport in Germany, the sexual abuse ofwomen’s football national teams in Afghanistan and Haiti, or the recent sexual assault against a player of the Spanish women’s national football team, to mention but a few.

Ineffective response
Responses from the relevant entities like sport organisations and governments have often fallen short of both the expectations of those impacted, and internationally recognised human rights standards. Some organisations have failed to initiate any investigation whatsoever, while others have commissioned or led inadequate responses. This has resulted in strong  criticism from affected persons, their representatives, and other civil society organisations. However, until now sport has not benefited from  any real  clarity or consistency around good practice on how to respond in a safe, adequate and effective way to allegations of abuse. This course seeks to address that.

Register HERE

Good practice based on research and experience
The Centre for Sport and Human Rights (CSHR) has conducted a study, in conjunction with victims, survivors, and whistleblowers of abuse across continents and sporting disciplines, and based on the learnings developed and published a guidance on how to conduct safe, appropriate and effective investigations into abuse cases in sport.  In this professional training, the Asser Institute partners with CSHR to connect practical research-based guidelines with relevant legal norms and procedures to address human rights abuses in sport. 

What will you learn? 

  •   How (not) to respond to reports and allegations of sport-related cases of abuse 

  •   Knowledge and experience in responding to such cases in a way that protects the affected person from further harm and complies with human rights 

  •    The role that investigations play in access to remedy more broadly 

Download the full programme

Speakers:

  • Kat Craig (CSHR)
  • Dr Daniela Heerdt (Asser Institute)
  • Joanna Maranhão (4x Olympians and Survivor Network Coordinator)
  • Loïc Alves (Senior Legal Counsel at FIFPRO)
  • Peter Nicholson (Head of Investigations and Intelligence Athletics Integrity Unit and Ethics Officer ICC)

Register HERE

[Online Event] The aftermath of the Women's World Cup final: FIFA's and UEFA's responsibility in the Jenni Hermoso case

Join us on 14 December at 12:00 CET for an online discussion on FIFA and UEFA’s responsibility in responding to the incident that overshadowed Spains’ victory of the Women's World Cup, when Spanish national team player Jennifer Hermoso experienced a violation of her bodily integrity and physical autonomy due to a forced kiss given to her by Luis Rubiales, then the Spanish FA's president. 


During the 2023/2024 academic year, the Asser International Sports Law Centre dedicates special attention to the intersection between transnational sports law and governance and gender. This online discussion is the second in a series of (online and offline) events, which explore the way in which international sports governing bodies define the gender divide in international sports, police gender-based abuses, and secure gender-specific rights to athletes. You can watch the recording of our first virtual discussion on the Semenya judgment of the ECtHR on our Youtube Channel.  


Just minutes after the Spanish women's national team had won the FIFA Women's World Cup, Rubiales congratulated the players on the podium and grabbed Hermoso's head and kissed her on the lips. This act not only shocked the players and the audience but also caused immediate international uproar and calls for resignation. Rubiales first defended his act, claiming that Hermoso had agreed to it. However, her statements right after it happened, as well as her official statement published just a few days after the event forcefully denied the consensual nature of the kiss. Hermoso felt “vulnerable and a victim of aggression, an impulsive act, sexist, out of place and without any type of consent". Three months later, Rubiales has been suspended by FIFA for three years, resigned as president of the Spanish FA, and is facing criminal prosecution for the crimes of sexual assault and coercion in Spanish national courts. 


As extreme as this case sounds, it is not. In fact, it is a reflection of structural issues that exist in the world of women's football and women's sport more generally. Furthermore, this incident raises the question of the rights of the players subjected to such behaviour and the responsibility of sports governing bodies, and FIFA and UEFA in particular, insanctioning those who are engaging in such actions. How should SGBs respond to such incidents? What type of rules and procedures should they have in place? What are the measures that should be introduced to prevent similar actions in the future? What is the role of states (the Spanish state in the present instance) in investigating and prosecuting these cases?  


We look forward to discussing these issues (and many others) with our three speakers, who have followed the case closely: 

  • Kat Craig, human rights lawyer, founder and CEO of Athlead, Senior Adviser to the Centre for Sport and Human Rights; 

  • Alexandra Gómez Bruinewoud, is a Senior Legal Counsel at FIFPRO and a judge at the FIFA Dispute Resolution Chamber; 

  • Borja Garcia is Reader in Sport Policy and Governance at School of Sport, Exercise and Health Sciences in Loughborough University


The online discussion will be introduced and moderated by Dr Antoine Duval and Dr Daniela Heerdt, and will include short presentations by the speakers and a Q&A with the audience. 


This is a free event, you can register for it HERE

[Conference] International Sports Law Journal Annual Conference - Asser Institute - 26-27 October

On 26 and 27 October 2023, the Asser Institute in The Hague will host the 2023 edition of the International Sports Law Journal (ISLJ) Conference. The ISLJ is the leading academic journal in transnational sports law and governance and is proud to provide a platform for transnational scholarly exchanges on the state of the field. The conference will address a number of complex issues and disputes at the top of the transnational sports law agenda. In particular, we will zoom in on three main topics:

 

How football governance is (re)shaped by EU law

Since the Bosman ruling of the European Court of Justice (CJEU) in 1995, it has been obvious to football fans around the world that the European Union (EU) has a considerable influence on the governance and regulation of professional football. This year, 2023, provides us a striking reminder of this fact with (at least) two fundamental judgments of the Grand Chamber of the CJEU expected in the Superleague case and the UEFA’s home-grown players rule. Additionally, two further cases, which are challenging FIFA’s transfer system and its agent regulations, remain pending before the Luxembourg court. We will be looking closely at this relationship between EU law and the governance football through two panels (featuring senior and junior researchers) and a keynote lecture delivered by one of the finest observers of this encounter: Prof. Stephen Weatherill (Oxford University).

 

Autonomy and neutrality in the transnational governance of sports 

The invasion of Ukraine by Russia has postponed (once again) the end of history and revived within the Olympic Movement fundamental debates dating back to the Cold War and South-African Apartheid. Can the Olympic Movement stay neutral in the face of a clear violation of international law by Russia and of war crimes being committed by its armed forces? What should the consequences be in terms of the participation of Russian athletes and teams in international sporting competitions? If they are allowed to participate, under what conditions should they be competing? All these questions are ultimately connected to the definition and practice of the autonomy and neutrality of sport vis-a-vis international law and politics and will be at the heart of the another set of presentations at the ISLJ conference and a digital bridge with the Symposium on Sport & Neutrality organised in Lillehammer by the Inland Norway University of Applied Sciences.

 

The transnational regulation of gender by sports governing bodies

Our third focus area for this year’s conference will be the regulation and governance of gender boundaries by SGBs. The recent and ground-breaking decision of the European Court of Human Rights in the Semenya case crystallises the contemporary importance of questions related to the division between genders in the context of international sports. Furthermore, the ongoing and heated debates on the participation of transgender athletes in female competitions are also highlighting the importance of the decisions taken by SGBs in this regard. We will be hosting a specific Panel tackling these issues and will be welcoming Prof. Silvia Camporesi (University of Vienna and King’s College London) for a keynote lecture connecting the legal debates with ethical and philosophical considerations.

 

More information and registration HERE

 

Download the full programme

 

Online participation available

Following the success of last year's webinar option, we are once again allowing online participation to the conference at an affordable price. Thus, we hope to internationalise and diversify our audience and to reach people who are not in a position to travel to The Hague.

We look forward to welcoming you in person in The Hague or digitally to this new iteration of the ISLJ conference.

[Advanced Professional Training] EU competition law and transnational sports governance - 24-25 October 2023

On 24 and 25 October, the Asser Institute will host an advanced professional training co-organised by Ben Van Rompuy and Antoine Duval focused on 'EU competition law and transnational sports governance'. The training is building on their experience acting as legal advisors for the complaint submitted to the European Commission (EC) by two Dutch speed-skaters, Mark Tuitert and Niels Kerstholt, against the International Skating Union (ISU), leading to the first negative decision rendered by the EC against an international sports governing body (SGB).  

 

The training will consist of: 

  • An in-depth introduction to the specific application of EU competition law to transnational sports governance
  • Specific sessions on the different (national, European and transnational) processes (both judicial and administrative) through which EU competition law claims can be raised against international SGBs
  • A concrete case study during which the group will be divided into teams representing different sides of a competition law claim involving an SGB
  • A round-table with  leading experts in EU competition law and sports for an interactive discussion on future developments in this area

 

[More information and registration HERE]

 

Why this professional training? 

Transnational sports governance is not neutral, its exercise comes with considerable economic effects and consequences, which can be controversial. In recent years we have witnessed an uptick of challenges on the basis of EU competition law against the governance decisions of international SGBs. In 2017, the European Commission for the first time adopted a decision finding a sporting rule (the ISU’s Eligibility Rules prohibiting skaters from participating in third-party events) in violation of EU competition law. Since then, we have seen a string of decisions by national competition authorities and high-profile private actions being launched against, for instance, UEFA and FIFA by the European Super League Company, football club Royal Antwerp F.C. or football agents. In short, EU competition law has become the main legal avenue through which regulations and decisions of international SGBs are being contested– both from outside the Olympic family and within. It is therefore crucial that sports stakeholders become proficient in the language of EU competition law, in understanding the specificities of its application to transnational sports governance, and in grasping the intricacies of the legal processes that can be used to do so. 

 

Is this training for you? 

This training is primarily aimed at professionals involved in the field of sports governance, such as legal counsels of SGBs, practicing lawyers active in the sports sector, public servants involved in the enforcement of competition law in the sporting context, and representatives of athletes, clubs and other sports stakeholders.  The advanced training will be both interactive, focusing on open exchanges between experts and participants, and participative, with the preparation of a case study in smaller groups.  

 

[More information and registration HERE]

 

Speakers include:

 

[More information and registration HERE]

 

Programme

Day 1 - Tuesday, 24 October

 

12:30 – 13:00 - Registration

13:00 – 13:30 - Welcome and introduction - Antoine Duval & Ben Van Rompuy

13:30 – 15:00 - How EU competition law applies to transnational sports governance: Key doctrines and cases  - Antoine Duval & Ben Van Rompuy

15:00 – 15:30 Coffee Break

15:30 – 16:30 - Bringing a competition law case against SGBs before the European Commission: Lessons from the ISU case  - Ben Van Rompuy & Antoine Duval

16:30 – 17:30 - Bringing a competition law case against SGBs in national courts: The German experience -  Mark E. Orth

17:30 – 18:00 - Bringing a competition law case against SGBs before the CAS: Opportunities and challenges -  Antoine Duval

19:00 - Dinner

 

Day 2 - Wednesday, 25 October

 

9:00 – 12:00 - Case study on FIFA’s Football Agent Regulations and EU competition law - Antoine Duval, Ben Van Rompuy, Mark E. Orth

12:00 – 13:00 Lunch

13:00 – 15:00 - Case study on FIFA’s Football Agent Regulations and EU competition law - Antoine Duval, Ben Van Rompuy, Mark E. Orth, An Vermeersch and Stephen Weatherill

15:00 – 15:30 - Coffee Break

15:30 – 17:00 - Closing discussion on the future of EU competition law and transnational sports governance - Antoine Duval, Ben Van Rompuy, Mark E. Orth, An Vermeersch, and Stephen Weatherill  

[Online Event] The ECtHR's  Semenya  ruling: A human rights game-changer for the transnational governance of sport? - 13 October 2023

During the 2023/2024 academic year, the Asser International Sports Law Centre will dedicate special attention to the intersection between transnational sports law and governance and gender. This online discussion is the first of a series of (online and offline) events which will explore the way in which international SGBs and the CAS define the gender divide in international sports, police gender-based abuses, and secure gender-specific rights to athletes.


Caster Semenya, a South-African runner and Olympic champion, was dominating her favorite distance, the 800m, for a number of years, when in 2018 the World Athletics (then known as IAAF) adopted a new set of regulations (colloquially known as the DSD Regulations), which imposed new conditions to the eligibility of athletes for certain female competitions, such as the 800m. Semenya, who has a condition known as differences in sex development (DSD), was forced to decide between subjecting to a specific medical treatment aimed at diminishing the level of testosterone in her body or stopping competing on her preferred distance. As she refused to undergo any medical treatment to regain eligibility, she decided to challenge the legality of World Athletics DSD Regulations before the CAS in Lausanne. While the CAS acknowledged that the Regulations were discriminatory and were disregarding the legal sex of Semenya in the name of a so-called sporting sex, the arbitrators also considered that this discrimination was justified and proportionate. Semenya’s challenge against the award was rejected by the Swiss Federal Tribunal (SFT) in August 2020. As a last resort, she decided to lodge an application with ECtHR against Switzerland.


On 11 July 2023, the ECtHR released its judgment in the much-awaited Caster Semenya v. Switzerland case. In short, the Strasbourg Court sided with Semenya and concluded that Switzerland failed to comply with its positive obligations stemming from the European Convention on Human Rights. The ruling is an important milestone in the interaction between the CAS and (European) human rights law. It will likely affect the place of human rights (and in particular the ECHR) at the CAS, the intensity of the supervision exercised by the SFT, as well as the justification of the regulatory decisions of the SGBs. We look forward to discussing these with our two speakers, who have followed closely the case and already blogged (here and here) about the judgment:


The online discussion will be introduced and moderated by Dr. Antoine Duval and Dr. Daniela Heerdt, and will include short presentations by the speakers and a Q&A with the audience.


Registration is available for free at: https://www.asser.nl/education-events/events/?id=4325

Summer Programme - Sports and Human Rights - 27-30 June - Join us!

Join us for our unique training programme on ‘Sport and human rights’ jointly organised by the Centre for Sport and Human Rights and the Asser Institute  and hosted by FIFPRO. After the success of the first edition in 2022 the programme returns, focusing on the link between the sport and human rights and zooming in on a number of challenges underlying this link, such as the human rights impacts of day-to-day sports, the normative framework and applicability of the UNGPs in the sporting context,  the rights of athletes, gender and sports, remedies for sport-related human rights harms, and more. 


If you wish to join, register HERE.


Tackling contemporary human rights challenges in sport
The programme brings together the latest in academic research with practical experiences from working in the field in an interactive package, fostering productive exchanges between the speakers and participants. Theoretical knowledge will be complemented by exposure to hands-on know-how and exercises.

Participants will have the opportunity to learn from experts from the Asser Institute, the Centre for Sport and Human Rights, and FIFPRO, as well as high-profile external speakers from both academia and practice. 

Latest version of the full 4-day programme

What will you gain?

  • An extensive introduction to the emergence of the sport and human rights movement

  • A greater understanding of the normative framework for human rights standards in sport

  • A comprehensive overview of the latest developments in the interplay between gender and sports

  • Practical know-how to govern  human rights in the context of sporting organisations

  • Practical know-how to address  human rights risks in the context of day-to-day sports, including safeguarding

  • Practical know-how to access remedy in human rights disputes

  • The opportunity to engage in discussions and network with leading academics and professionals 

Topics addressed in this summer programme include:

  • The emergence of the sport and human rights discussion/movement

  • The integration of human rights in the governance of sport

  • The protection of athletes’ rights

  • Gender and sports

  • Access to remedy for sport-related human rights harms


If you wish to join, register HERE.


Scholarships

The Centre for Sport and Human Rights is funding a scholarship for an outstanding master student, PhD candidate, or civil society representative from an underrepresented group, including those from the global South, to participate in the Asser Institute’s summer programme ‘Sport and Human Rights’. More information is available on their website.

Interested candidates should apply by 31 March 2023, 20:00 CET through the CSHR website.


Call for Papers - How football changed Qatar (or not): Transnational legal struggles in the shadow of the FIFA World Cup 2022 - Deadline 6 January 2023

The FIFA World Cup 2022 in Qatar is now well under way, yet the relentless public debates around Qatar’s human rights record, be it regarding the rights of LGBTQ+ or the rights of migrant workers who built the infrastructure that underpin the competition, is not dying down. In fact, the whole build-up towards the event has been defined by an intense public scrutiny of Qatar, with civil society organizations and international labor unions engaging in continuous advocacy to report on and improve the living and working conditions of migrant workers active on Qatar’s many building sites. This issue also attracted attention and critique from both the international media and public authorities all around the globe. In fact, the question of Qatar’s (lack of) compliance with internationally recognized human rights and core labor standards caused so much negative publicity and external pressure that a number of legislative and institutional reforms were initiated, officially aimed at improving the rights and standing of migrant workers in Qatar. While it is highly disputed whether these reforms have led to actual changes on the ground or should be seen only as window-dressing, it remains clear that the global public attention brought to Qatar by its hosting of the FIFA World Cup 2022 has forced the Qatari authorities to engage legislative reforms and pay at least lip service to the concerns raised.

In spite of the fact that this issue continues to play a major role in the transnational public discourse, it received until now relatively scant attention in the academic literature, specifically in the international/transnational legal field. Yet, the debates around the Qatar 2022 World Cup are in practice mobilizing a range of legal arguments connected to the interpretation and application of international human rights law and international labor law, as well as activating international (at the ILO) or transnational (at the Swiss OECD National Contact Point) legal processes. Furthermore, they raise well-known questions regarding the compliance of states with international legal commitments and connect with debates on the universality of human rights and their translation in particular social contexts. In short, we believe there is room for a multi-disciplinary engagement with the legal processes and social mobilizations triggered by Qatar’s successful bid to host the FIFA World Cup 2022 and their impacts on local social and legal rules and institutions. Hence, Qatar’s journey towards the FIFA World Cup 2022 constitutes an interesting case study to investigate more generally the transnational social and legal mechanisms which underpin the concretization of international (human rights/labor) law in a particular context and give it a specific reality.

We invite paper submissions from different methodological backgrounds (e.g. law, anthropology, sociology, history, public policy) which engage with the many entanglements of Qatar with international (human rights and labor) law in the context of the organizing and hosting of the FIFA World Cup 2022. The papers will be first discussed in a digital workshop that will take place on 15 and 16 February 2023. Please note that we have an agreement with the German Law Journal (Open access journal on comparative, European and international law published by Cambridge University Press) to publish a selection of the papers.

If you wish to participate in the workshop and the ensuing publications, please send an abstract of max. 300 words and a CV to a.duval@asser.nl by 6 January 2023. The selected participants will be informed by 9 January 2023. Extended abstracts (2000 words) will be due on 6 February 2023.


Supported by German Law Journal

 

New Event! Governing European football: What role for the European Union? - 16 December - Brussels

Join us for a round table co-organized by GLawNet and the Asser Institute at the Campus Brussels of the Maastricht University (Avenue de Tervueren 153, 1150 Brussels) just one day after the publication of the Opinion of Advocate General Rantos in the European Super League (ESL) case. The discussion between academics and stakeholders will focus on the role played by the EU, as well as the role it ought to play, in determining the way football is organised and governed.


In 2021, the announcement of the creation of a breakaway European Super League (ESL), as well as the drama of its early demise, stunned the world.  Since then, the company behind the ESL and UEFA (as well as FIFA) are locked into a legal battle that will soon come to an end at the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU). Following the preliminary questions raised by a Spanish court, the CJEU will weigh in on whether UEFA and FIFA breached EU competition law with their attempts to thwart the emergence of the ESL. It will not be the first time that the governing bodies of football, both Swiss associations, face scrutiny before the EU courts - many will remember the 1995 Bosman ruling. However, this time around various stakeholders and observers are calling for the EU to not only referee this particular dispute, but to as well start playing a stronger governance role by regulating European football.


Programme:

15:00 – 15:05 Opening: Mariolina Eliantonio (Maastricht University)

15:05 – 16:30 - Roundtable: Governing European Football: What role for the European Union?
Moderator: Carlo Colombo (Maastricht University)

16:30 Reception


This is an In-Person event only and will take place at the Campus Brussels of the Maastricht University (Avenue de Tervueren 153, 1150 Brussels). If you wish to attend, please register HERE.


Supported by undefined

New Event - Zoom In - Sports Governing Bodies and the Russian invasion of Ukraine - The end of neutrality? - 12 October - 16.00-17.30 CET

Sport is often presented by Sports Governing Bodies (SGBs), and in particular the International Olympic Committee, as apolitical. A neutral endeavor, which ignores the whims of politics and keeps national governments at arm’s length. In short, it is thought of as an autonomous sphere of transnational society wishing to remain unaffected by the political turbulences out there. In fact, many SGBs enforce strict rules banning political speech by individuals, and in the spaces, subjected to their contractual power. Moreover, FIFA, for example, regularly issues effective sanctions against states which are perceived as threatening the autonomy of the governance of football on their territory. Hence, this apolitical ideal of international sports is not only a founding myth of the Olympic Movement, it is actively pursued by SGBs through their private regulatory powers and has hard consequences for athletes, clubs, sport officials alike.


Yet, on 24 February, Russia decided to invade Ukraine, in what has become the most important land war in Europe since the implosion of ex-Yugoslavia. This invasion was quickly followed by condemnations from the IOC and many other SGBs, leading in many cases, most prominently by UEFA and FIFA, to the exclusion of Russian teams and athletes from international sporting competitions. This reaction is difficult to square with the neutrality and autonomy of sport so vigorously defended by the international SGBs until recently. It raises also many questions of double standards: why did this illegal invasion lead to sporting consequences and not others? Furthermore, the Court of Arbitration of Sport recently released two orders (available here and here) concerning UEFA and FIFA’s decisions to exclude Russian national teams and clubs from their football competitions, which outline the legal strategies pursued by the SGBs to reconcile the public urge to exclude Russia(ns) from international sporting competitions, and their commitments to political neutrality.

We are very happy to welcome three outstanding scholars to discuss these issues with us from different methodological perspectives.

Speakers:

  • Prof. Carmen Pérez (Universidad Carlos III de Madrid), who wrote a blog on the reactions of SGBs to Russia’s invasion
  • Dr. Daniela Heerdt (Asser Institute and Centre for Sports and Human Rights), who is the co-author of a blog mapping the reactions of SGBs to Russia’s invasion
  • Carole Gomez (University of Lausanne and Institut de Relations Internationales et Strategiques), who has been interviewed numerous times by international media on the issue (see here and here)

Moderators:

Register for free HERE!


ISLJ Conference 2022 - Transnational sports law and governance in turbulent times - Early Bird Registration Ends Tomorrow!

On 25 and 26 October 2022, the Asser Institute in The Hague will host the 2022 edition of the International Sports Law Journal (ISLJ) Conference. The ISLJ is the leading academic journal in transnational sports law and governance and is proud to provide a platform for transnational debates on the state of the field. 2022 has put a number of complex issues and disputes on the top of the transnational sports law agenda, which will be at the heart of the conference.


Sports governing bodies react to Russia's invasion of Ukraine
First, Russia’s brutal invasion of Ukraine in February triggered a swift and decisive reaction by a wide range of international sports governing bodies (SGBs), leading in particular to the exclusion of Russian teams and athletes from many international sporting competitions, including most prominently the FIFA World Cup 2022 in Qatar. These reactions have shown, once again, that sport is far from immune from the turbulences of international relations and raise the question of its alleged neutrality and apolitical nature. To engage with these issues, we have invited Prof. Jonathan Grix (Metropolitan Manchester University) to deliver a keynote speech and will dedicate a specific panel to discussing the intersection between transnational sports law and international law/relations.

Monopoly of sports governing bodies
Second, the organization of international sports is also currently threatened by challenges to the traditional monopoly position of international SGBs raised under EU antitrust law. Early July 2022, the Grand Chamber of the Court of Justice of the European Union heard two crucial cases (International Skating Union and Superleague) concerning the compatibility of the rules of international SGBs aimed at sanctioning athletes and clubs who participate in unauthorized third-party competitions. Dr. Van Rompuy (Leiden University), the driving force behind the ISU case, will be discussing with us the potential impact of competition law on the governance of sport and what to expect from the pending decisions of the CJEU. Additionally, we will host two panels dedicated to the application of competition law to sports governance, both at an international and national level.

Human rights and mega-sporting events
Third, with both Beijing and Qatar hosting mega-sporting events this year, it is difficult to ignore the human rights issues raised by international sporting competitions. A fast-growing social movement aimed at urging the SGBs to abide by their human rights responsibilities has been developing around the activism of some NGOs and the creation of the Centre for Sport and Human Rights (CSHR). The CEO of the CSHR, Mary Harvey, will be joining us to share her thoughts on the role of sports lawyers and sports law academics in this discussion. Her intervention will be followed by a panel dedicated to the intersections between human rights and transnational sports law and governance.

Trans and queer participation in sporting competitions
Finally, the question of the participation of transgender athletes in sporting competitions has become an extremely contentious issue of debate in recent years, especially in the United States. Furthermore, International SGBs, such as FINA recently, have started to impose specific requirements to the participation of trans athlete in international competitions. Our closing panel will take a fresh look at this question by foregrounding the way in which trans and queer participation in sporting competitions has been accommodated in South Asia.

Online participation available
For the first time this year, we will allow online participation to the conference for an affordable price. Our aim is to internationalise and diversify further our audience and to reach people who in light of the current challenges, be it Covid-19 or climate change, are not in a position to come in person to The Hague.

Programme
Download the full programme.

Register HERE! (Early Bird Registration is available only until 1 October, 23:59CET)