Play the Game will create an overview of power relations in international sport

In a time where the debate on authoritarian states and their influence in international sport has reached new heights, Play the Game has set forth to create a more accurate and dynamic image of which individuals and networks that exercise the greatest power in international sport.

In cooperation with German investigative journalist Jens Weinreich, Play the Game will create an overview of the power structures in international sports federations and organisations. By collecting more than 10,000 positions in international federations and creating an overview of where sporting events historically have been hosted, Play the Game will identify the nations and individuals that exercise political power in international sport.

Together with Jens Weinreich, Play the Game will publish various indexes that can clarify power relations in the international sports world and, through case studies, highlight particularly significant findings in the dataset.

The long-term ambition is to create a database available to journalists, researchers, sports leaders and others with interest in sports politics. The database will help qualify and inspire not only Play the Game’s own work and conferences, but also analyses carried out by other national and international research institutions and organisations.   

The project will be concluded in 2023.

Senior analyst and head of conference

Stanis Elsborg

International sports politics, governance, geopolitics, sports history

Read more about part 2 of the project

Mohammed Bin Salman
Dataset on sports power relations in Saudi Arabia