About Play the Game

Play the Game is an initiative run by the Danish Institute for Sports Studies (Idan) that aims at raising the ethical standards of sport and promoting democracy, transparency, and freedom of expression in world sport.

Play the Game was founded in 1997 and since then it has become a unique independent platform for raising and developing awareness about critical issues in modern sport such as doping, corruption, good governance, match-fixing, sustainability of mega-events, the role of sports journalism, and the human rights of athletes.

  • Our target groups are journalists, academics, athlete representatives, and a wide range of stakeholders in sport.
  • Our key activities are biennial conferences, news production, and research activities within the field of sports governance. 

Play the Game is often used as a source of information by international media and journalists, and the organisation has an advisory function in several transnational bodies including EU Expert Groups on sports integrity matters, the Enlarged Partial Agreement on Sport (EPAS) under the Council of Europe, and the Permanent Consultative Council of the Intergovernmental Committee for Physical Education and Sport (CIGEPS) under UNESCO.

Play the Game began as a conference initiative in 1997 under the auspices of DGI – the Danish Gymnastics and Sports Associations. 109 sports journalists and sports researchers gathered in Denmark to discuss a number of emerging issues within sport politics, and they formed an international network called the Sports Intelligence Unit (SIU).

After another two conferences in 2000 and 2002, Play the Game was established as an independent organisation in 2004 with financial support from the Danish Ministry of Culture, the National Olympic Committee and Sports Confederation of Denmark (DIF), the Danish Association of Company Sport (DFIF), Danish Gymnastics and Sports Associations (DGI), and Team Danmark (the national Danish elite sports institution).

In 2011, Play the Game became part of the Danish Institute for Sports Studies (Idan), an independent institution set up by the Danish Ministry of Culture and financed by the Danish state lottery. 

In January 2011, Play the Game became part of the Danish Institute for Sports Studies (Idan), an independent institution set up by the Danish Ministry of Culture.

Play the Game is governed by the statutes of the Danish Institute for Sports Studies.

As of 1 January 2011, Play the Game is run by the Danish Institute for Sports Studies (Idan), an independent institution set up by the Danish Ministry of Culture.

Mission

The objectives of the Danish Institute for Sports Studies – including Play the Game and the Danish Institute for Non-formal Education – are:

  • to establish a general overview of and insight into the fields of sports and non-formal education nationally as well as internationally
  • to analyse the implications and perspectives of policy initiatives within the fields of sports and non-formal education
  • to initiate public debate on key issues regarding non-formal education and Danish and international sports politics including organising the international Play the Game conference

Vision

The Danish Institute for Sports Studies is a leading knowledge partner that aims to qualify the work with key issues in sport and non-formal education and stimulate constructive political discussions and lasting solutions in practice.

Values

The work of the institute is guided by six value-based ambitions:

  • Expertise: The work of the institute should be based on high standards of academic excellence
  • Relevance: The work of the institute must address issues of importance to our stakeholders
  • Impact: The institute aims to communicate in a clear and incisive manner
  • Independence: The work of the institute must not be influenced by political considerations or interests
  • Interdisciplinarity: The work of the institute should cut across disciplines and professional demarcations
  • Professionalism: The work processes at the institute must be transparent, effective, and of high quality

The Danish Institute for Sports Studies, Play the Game and the Danish Institute for Non-formal Education have set a number of new strategic goals based on inputs from stakeholders and partners and on our understanding of the current developments within non-formal education and sports nationally and internationally.

We want to be a leading professional and practice-oriented environment that provides stakeholders within the sectors of non-formal education and sports with new knowledge about their fields and the roles they play in society.

To fulfil this ambition, we will use the best available methods to produce relevant and academically based knowledge and put it into play. It also requires us to become even better at shortening the distance from knowledge to action.

We will do this in cooperation with the outside world by building partnerships, and we will look inward to create synergy across the institute’s functions and improve our work processes to get the most out of our resources.

In 2011, Play the Game became part of the Danish Institute for Sports Studies (Idan), an independent institution set up by the Danish Ministry of Culture and financed by the Danish state lottery with an annual grant of approximately 10 million Danish kroner. 

In addition, Play the Game has attracted funding from the European Union for a number of research projects on sports governance and has been awarded several specific grants from the Danish government to promote good governance in sports.

Play the Game is staffed by employees of the Danish Institute for Sports Studies. Not all are working full-time on Play the Game projects but Play the Game activities make up the equivalent of three to four full-time positions annually.

Annual salaries in 2022

The annual salary including pension for managing director Troels Rasmusssen is 986.568 DKK

The annual salary including pension for international director Jens Sejer Andersen is 712.658 DKK

Since its inception, representatives from Play the Game have given keynote addresses, lectures, and presentations in over 30 countries related to different aspects of our work.

Each presentation is based on Play the Game's knowledge and experience but is always adapted to the specific context of the host country or the event.

If you want to invite Play the Game to speak at your event, please contact us