PtG Article 17.06.2011

Play the Game launches “Change in sport day” during October conference

The preliminary programme for Play the Game 2011 presents more than 100 speakers who will debate how to bring change to the heart of sport

The preliminary programme for Play the Game 2011 presents more than 100 speakers who will debate how to bring change to the heart of sport Five days densely packed with lectures, workshops, debates and networking are waiting to be consumed by expectedly 400 sports officials, journalists, academics, athletes, students and other stakeholders when Play the Game holds its 7th international conference at the German Sport University Cologne. The conference runs from 3-6 October with an optional extra event Sunday the 2nd October: A full-day seminar arranged by national public radio broadcaster Deutschlandfunk. “Our aim is not only to keep people busy for the week with issues that matters a lot to them. The recent turmoil in FIFA has shown once again that we need to take the debate about how international sport is governed one step further,” says programme responsible Jens Sejer Andersen, International Director of Play the Game. To highlight this ambition Play the Game has decided to name the last day of the conference “Change in sport day” and target the day’s two plenary sessions at creating a set of ideas and guidelines for improving governance in sport. “The conference gathers a number of high-profile international sports leaders and experts that altogether will be able to lay out evidence, provide inspiration and shape the debates towards a useful outcome for sport,” Andersen says with a reference to speakers like the IOC member and former WADA President Richard W. Pound, the President of the International Weightlifting Federation Tamás Aján, the SportAccord manager for social responsibility issues, Ingrid Beutler, the head of Transparency International Switzerland, Anne Schwöbel, and many others. “We are grateful that we already at this stage of planning can count well over 100 speakers covering a wide range of issues like mega-events, match fixing, grass-root sport, doping policies, gender discrimination, fan culture and Arab sport,” Andersen states. As something new this year, Play the Game has partnered up with several international organisations who assume responsibility for planning a workshop around their area of expertise. The partner organisations who have confirmed so far are streetfootballworld, Sport and Citizenship, Supporters Direct, the International Sport for Development and Peace Association and the European Journalism Centre. The conference in Cologne is expected to be the largest Play the Game conference so far and Jens Sejer Andersen gives credit to the German Sport University Cologne for this achievement. “The sport university has shown a fantastic commitment in all aspects of the planning, from securing candy at coffee breaks to contacting high ranking politicians and sports leaders, and participants can look forward to meeting a very welcoming host.” The preliminary programme is available for download here. Please observe that changes can and will be made. For more information about Play the Game 2011, the 7th world communication conference on sport and society, go to