The Play the Game Award

The Play the Game Award pays tribute to an individual or a group of persons who in their professional careers or as volunteers in sport have made an outstanding effort to strengthen the basic ethical values of sport.

The Play the Game Award is presented at every Play the Game conference by the chairman of the board for the Danish Institute for Sports Studies or his/her representative. 

The award winner is chosen during the conference after nominations from the administration by an intern committee consisting of:

  • The chairman of the board for the Danish Institute for Sports Studies
  • A representative appointed by the board
  • The director for the Danish Institute for Sports Studies
  • The international director for Play the Game
  • The previous award winner

The award consists of a piece of art and a speaker’s invitation including free travel, accommodation, and board for the next Play the Game conference.

Previous winners of the Play the Game Award

2024: Investigative journalists Grit Hartmann and Nick Harris for their outstanding efforts to strengthen the basic ethical values of sport. Read more

2022: Belarusian Sport Solidarity Foundation and Khalida Popal for using their passion for sport and their athletic careers as drivers for social change and putting themselves at the forefront of struggles for democracy and basic human rights. Read more

2019: Nancy Hogshead-Makar for being a tireless advocate for young female athletes and her efforts in trying to change the landscape for women in sport and their right to have their voices heard. Read more

2017: Yulia and Vitaly Stepanov with Hajo Seppelt for their uncovering of the unprecedented doping conspiracy among Russian and international sports leaders. Read more

2015: Bob Munro (Canada) and Mathare Youth Sports Association for their efforts to create sustainable social progress and their courageous battle against corruption in sport. Read more

2013: Richard W. Pound, Canadian IOC member and former WADA president, received the Play the Game Award 2013 for his uncompromising efforts in the fight for a cleaner and more democratic sports movement. Read more

2011: Andrew Jennings (UK) and Jens Weinreich (Germany) for their tireless work documenting and bringing the enormous levels of mismanagement and corruption in the world's leading sports organisations into public view. Read more

2009: Declan Hill, Canadian PhD and author, for his groundbreaking research and documentation of the realities of match fixing. Read more

2007: Sandro Donati, Italy, for his courage and determination in revealing cases of doping and corruption in Italian and international sport and for his tenacity in researching the links between doping and international organised crime. Read more

2005: Mario Goijman, Argentina, for his courage and commitment in bringing to light the theft and corruption that has taken place in the International Volleyball Federation during the reign of FIVB president Ruben Acosta. Read more

2002: Laura Robinson, Canadian journalist and author, for her courageous uncovering of systematic sexual abuse in Canadian junior hockey.