Handbook on International Sports Law

Handbook on International Sports Law

Research Handbooks in International Law series

Edited by James A.R. Nafziger and Stephen F. Ross

This Handbook presents a comprehensive collection of essays by leading scholars and practitioners in the burgeoning field of international sports law.

Chapter 5: Models of Sport Governance within the European Union

Robert Siekmann and Janwillem Soek

Subjects: law - academic, comparative law, private international law, sports law


Robert Siekmann and Janwillem Soek 1. INTRODUCTION In 2004 André-Noël Chaker published a study on ‘Good governance in Sport – A European survey’ which was commissioned by the Council of Europe.1 The Council of Europe was the first international organisation established in Europe after the Second World War. With 46 Member States, the Council of Europe currently represents the image of a ‘wider Europe’. Its main objective is to strengthen democracy, human rights and the rule of law. The Council of Europe was the first international intergovernmental organisation to take initiatives, to establish legal instruments and to offer an institutional framework for the development of sport at European level.2 The study covers the sport-related legislation and governance regulations of 20 European countries. The aim of this study was to measure and assess sport governance in each of the participating countries. For the purposes of the study the term ‘sport governance’ had been given a specific meaning. Sport governance is the creation of effective networks of sport-related state agencies, sport’s non-governmental organisations and processes that operate jointly and independently under specific legislation, policies and private regulations to promote ethical, democratic, efficient and accountable sports activities. The legislative framework of the countries under review was analysed according to whether they have references to sport in their constitutions and whether they have a specific law on sport at national level. There are two distinctive approaches to sports legislation in Europe. Countries have adopted an ‘interventionist’ or a ‘non-interventionist’...

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