Programme overview and more speakers ready for Play the Game 2019
05.07.2019By Play the Game
The outline of the upcoming Play the Game 2019 conference is becoming clearer with little more than three months to the opening day on 13 October in Colorado Springs.
A tentative programme overview showing the schedule and topics of the sessions is now available.
In the past few weeks, close to 100 abstracts have been approved, and a number of high profile speakers have joined the already long list of agenda setting names. Among the latest confirmations are:
- Steven Berryman, whose efforts as former special agent for the U.S. tax authorities were decisive for opening the FIFA case. As previously told, he will join the former head of FBI’s FIFA unit, Evan Norris, and the author of ‘Red Card’ – the book on the case – journalist Ken Bensinger from BuzzFeed.
- Another investigative journalist who works under very difficult conditions, Anas Aremeyaw Anas, from TigerEye Investigations, Ghana
- Han Xiao, Chair of the Athletes’ Advisory Council under the USOPC, USA
- David Howman, Chairman of the Athletics Integrity Unit and former Director General of WADA, New Zealand
- The newly elected president of the international association of national anti-doping agencies (iNADO), Michael Ask, CEO of Anti-Doping Denmark
- Alex Phillips, Head of Governance and Compliance at UEFA, Switzerland
Recently, the likely future president of WADA, the Polish sports minister Witold Banka, confirmed his presence only to withdraw a few days later as his prime minister ordered the whole cabinet to remain at home following general elections in Poland on 13 October. Instead, it is agreed that Witold Banka will try to be available for Q&A via Skype.
”The programme is building up very well, and our challenge will now mainly be to make the conference known across the Americas. To that end, we will welcome every helping hand from our friends and colleagues,” says Play the Game’s international director, Jens Sejer Andersen.
He emphasises that there is now only a few vacant slots in the sessions, but since there will inevitably be changes over the coming months, there is still time to submit an abstract/storyline.
To accommodate those who submit late, the early bird deadline – which allows for full conference participation with all lunches, dinners, and activities included for only USD 650 – has been extended until 31 July.
The filling of the programme space now leads to a cutback in some aspirations for the 2019 conference.
”Unfortunately, we have to skip one of the major themes we launched, namely that about the increasing rivalry over ownership of sports competitions. There has been too little interest among those submitting abstracts, and we have not been able to secure top names in the field this year,” Jens Sejer Andersen says.
”On the other hand, this has made room for a stronger focus than expected on issues such as the Semenya case and the calls for a reform of CAS, so all in all we believe we can deliver a conference of the same intensity and standard as in previous years.”