A participant from the current MESGO edition has been appointed to a new executive position.
Since January, Stefan Gunnarsson has stepped into the role of Club Licensing and Development Director at the United Arab Emirates Pro League. Stefan was previously Head of Marketing and Commercial at the Icelandic Football Association (KSI), and has over 20 years’ of marketing experience. He joined the Icelandic Football Association in 2018 after ten years as the head of VERT Marketing Agency, marketing consulting company that he co-founded in 2009.
We would like to wish him the best of success in his new role at the Pro League, where Stefan will work to enhance the work of the Pro League clubs on various issues.
From 6 to 10 March 2023, the MESGO VII participants were in Germany (Mainz and Frankfurt) for Session 4 of the programme. Directed by both Mathias Schubert and Volker Bernardi, senior researcher and sports law lecturer, respectively, at Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz.
Mathias Schubert, Senior Researcher, JGU Mainz
Volker Bernardi, Sports Law Lecturer, JGU Mainz
The session covered several topics related to ethics and integrity in sport, such as; safeguarding and abuse, ethical responsibility of leaders, sports and human rights, freedom of speech and athlete activism, diversity and discrimination including the governance of World Para Sports.
Participants had the opportunity to reflect collectively in some depth on the different topics through work exercises but also by interacting with a large panel of experts in their field. A warm thank you to all the speakers for their high-level contributions to the session!
At the Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz: Presentation about “Ethics and Integrity in Sport: Introduction & Workshop” by Mike Mcnamee, Professor, KU Leuven & Swansea University
At the Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz: Presentation about “Monitoring Good Governance and Ethical Principles in Practice: The Example of the Gymnastics Ethics Foundation (GEF)” by Alexander McLin, Director, Gymnastics Ethics Foundation
At the German Olympic Sports Confederation: Presentation about “The Sports Good Governance Game – Inspire Sport Managers to Become Ethical Leaders” by Abigail Levrau, Professor, Executive Committee Member of GUBERNA & Mathieu Marlier, Professor, Lunex University, Luxemburg
The MESGO group at the German Olympic Sports Confederation
At the German Football Association: Presentation about “Sports and Human Rights” by David Grevemberg, Chief Innovation and Partnerships Officer, The Centre for Sport and Human Rights
The MESGO group at the German Football Association
At the MEWA Arena (MAINZ 05 STADIUM): Presentation about “Diversity in Sports: A Sport Governing Body Perspective” by Ivo Ferriani, IOC member; Member of IOC Gender Equality Diversity and Inclusion Commission; President, International Bobsleigh & Skeleton Federation
The MESGO group at the MEWA Arena
At the EURO 2024 Headquarters: Welcome speech by Markus Stenger, Managing Director, Euro 2024 GmbH & Mex Schär, Managing Director, Euro 2024 GmbH
At the EURO 2024 Headquarters: Open Debate about “the Athlete as Gladiator in Modern Sport: Towards Occupationalisation?” with Matthias Hofbauer, Former Professional Floorball Player, Member of the International World Games Association (IWGA) athletes’ commission; Dr Jürgen Mittag, Professor, German Sport University, Cologne & Rachel Smith, OLY, Athlete Service Manager of Team GB, British Olympic Association (BOA)
In terms of entertainment, the participants had the opportunity to play football at the new DFB-Campus and indoor climbing as well as enjoying excellent traditional German cuisine.
The next MESGO session will take place in Barcelona (Spain) from 26 to 30 June 2023 and will be dedicated to Events and Participation.
The international governing body of football (FIFA) has appointed Jan Peter Dogge — MESGO III graduate — as FIFA’s Team Lead Integrity.
Jan Peter Dogge begins his FIFA career as the New Lead of the Integrity Team after spending 13 years at the Royal Dutch Football Association (KNVB), where he successively held the role of Licencing Manager and Integrity Manager.
He has an exceptional knowledge in the field of Integrity and significant professional experience within the football sector.
A great promotion for Jan Peter, who will continue to apply his outstanding knowledge of match-fixing and other sporting corruption abuses to uphold the integrity of football competitions.
On behalf of all the MESGO community we would like to wish him the best of success in his new role.
The third session of MESGO VII edition took place in Brussels from 16 to 20 January 2023. The session was dedicated to the legal framework in sport and co-directed by Nathalie Alaphilippe and Jean-Christophe Breillat, both lawyers at CDES.
Nathalie Alaphilippe, Lawyer and MESGO director, CDES
Jean-Christophe Breillat, Head of Legal Affairs, CDES
Throughout the week, MESGO participants had the opportunity to attend the presentations in the following locations across Brussels
The session started on Monday afternoon with two introductory presentations on the concept of lex sportiva by Franck Latty (Professor of International Law, University of Paris 13) and the basics of Swiss by Antonio Rigozzi (Attorney-at-law, Lévy Kaufmann-Kohler). Then, we moved to a round-table discussion with Antonio Rigozzi (Attorney-at-law, Lévy Kaufmann-Kohler), Catherine Pitre (Head of Case Management, Sport Resolutions) and Rui Botica Santos (Founding Partner of CRA Law Firm, CAS arbitrator).
Loto Park: Round-table discussion about “Arbitration in Sport: pros and cons. Is CAS the only remedy?” with Rui Botica Santos (Founding Partner of CRA Law Firm, CAS arbitrator), Catherine Pitre (Head of Case Management, Sport Resolutions) and Antonio Rigozzi (Attorney-at-law, Lévy Kaufmann-Kohler).
On Tuesday, following a welcome speech given by Sylvie Marissal (Human Resources Director, Royal Belgian Football Association), we discussed in-house legal management within sporting organisations, by introducing the question of disciplinary proceedings and legal strategy. The issue of the fight against doping was also discussed.
Royal Belgian Football Association: Presentation about “the management of a legal department: from legal strategy to risk management” by Efraim Barak (Founder of Efraim Barak, Sport Law and Consultancy)
Royal Belgian Football Association: Presentation about “The disciplinary powers of sports organisations: the importance of sound proceedings” by Loïc Alves (Legal Counsel, FIFPRO and MESGO IV graduate)
Royal Belgian Football Association: Presentation of WADA by Benjamin Cohen (General Director, International Testing Agency (ITA))
Royal Belgian Football Association: Round-table discussion about “The anti-doping example – the importance of global harmonisation and perspective for other areas (match fixing/ abuse in sport…)” with Jean-Christophe Breillat (Lawyer, CDES), Benjamin Cohen (General Director, Independent testing authority (ITA)), Sophie Kwasny (Head of the Sport division, EPAS executive secretary, Council of Europe) and Christian Kalb (Director, CK Consulting)
The following day was dedicated to EU law and its application to sport. After a presentation on the fundamentals of EU Law and sport by Michele Colucci (Member of the Ethics Unit, European Commission), the MESGO participants had the opportunity to visit the European Parliament and to discuss the sustainability of the European model of sport.
Business & Science Poland: Presentation about “EU law and sport: in the name of autonomy and specificity of sport” by Michele Colucci (Member of the Ethics Unit, European Commission)
European Parliament: Round-table discussion about “the sustainability of the European model of sport” with Jean-François Brocard (Associate Professor and Economist, CDES), Alexandre Husting (Youth, Culture and Sport Attaché of the Permanent Representation of Luxemburg to the EU), Laura Vilches (Head of European Public Affairs, La Liga), Katarzyna Biniaszczyk (Coordinator of the Sports Group, European Parliament – MESGO V graduate), Matteo Zacchetti (Policy Officer, Sport Unit, DG EAC, European Commission) and Benoît Keane (Solicitor, Keane Legal, Brussels)
Day 4 was organised at Autoworld Brussels where the MESGO participants presented a case study about the FIM’s judicial system and had the opportunity to discuss their reflections with our two experts, Françoise Emery (CEO, Fédération Internationale de Motocyclisme, FIM) and Alejandra Salmerón García (Senior Legal Counsel, Fédération Internationale de l’Automobile, FIA). Following this, Yves Le Lostecque (Head of Erasmus Mundus and Sport Unit, EACEA) provided an overview of the European funding sources available for the sports sector, before the workshop on “Creative Thinking” organised by Trevor Holmes (Lead Trainer, Bevel). In the evening, a team-building event was organised – a dinner and beer tasting in a traditional Belgian Bar “Moeder Lambic”.
Françoise Emery (CEO, Fédération Internationale de Motocyclisme, FIM)
Alejandra Salmerón García (Senior Legal Counsel, Fédération Internationale de l’Automobile, FIA)
On the final day, the issue of EU lobbying was tackled during a round-table discussion with Glenn Cezanne (Founding and Managing Director, Time and Place Consulting Brussels), James Ogilvie (EU and Governmental Affairs Manager, UEFA), Teodora Pletosu (EU Public Projects Specialist, UEFA) and Lukas Declercq (EU Affairs Director, Europe Active).
Glenn Cezanne (Founding and Managing Director, Time and Place Consulting Brussels)and Lukas Declercq (EU Affairs Director, Europe Active)
James Ogilvie (EU and Governmental Affairs Manager, UEFA)
The next MESGO session will take place in Mainz (Germany) from 6 to 10 March 2023 and will be dedicated to Ethics and Integrity.
It is with great sadness that we learned of the passing of Saoud Al-Mohannadi, former MESGO participant (MESGOII).
After serving as the General Secretary of the 16-time Qatar Stars League and two-time AFC Champions League winners Al Sadd SC., Saoud was appointed general secretary of the Qatar Football Association (QFA) in 2001.
In 2015, he became vice president of the AFC, a position he held until his death.
Described as “a true servant of the game” by AFC President Shaikh Salman bin Ebrahim Al Khalifa, Saoud contributed immensely to the development and growth of QFA competitions and, in particular, played a key role in the transformation of the AFC Asian Cup.
For the MESGO family, Saoud will also be remembered as a caring and passionate person, eager to learn and always willing to share his knowledge and experience. The entire MESGO team convey their sincere condolences to his family, friends and colleagues. Our thoughts are with them during this very difficult time.
Alexandros Gerontikos, MESGO IV graduate, is starting a new position as Head of sales Europe & CIS at SPORTRADAR, the leading global sports technology company.
Member of SPORTRADAR for over 10 years, having held the positions of Sales Director Southern Europe and, for the past three years, Regional Sales Director Western Europe, Alexandros has made and continues to make a significant contribution to the development of an industry that puts the protection of sport integrity first.
His new position as Head of Sales responsible for Europe and CIS since 1 January 2023 comes as no surprise to those who know Alexandros, someone with a very strong work ethics, an extensive managerial experience and knowledge in the sports industry, mainly through betting operators around the world, and a passion for his work.
On behalf of all the MESGO community we would like to wish him the best of success in his new role !
Over two days, on 13 and 14 October 2022, 17 participants of the sixth edition of the Executive Master in Global Sport Governance (MESGO) defended their theses and received their certificates at the graduation ceremony in Paris.
The graduation ceremony was chaired by Sean Hamil, Director of the Birkbeck Sport Business Centre at the University of London. Also speaking at the ceremony were Nathalie Alaphilippe, lawyer at CDES and MESGO Programme Director, Jean-Jacques Gouguet, professor at the University of Limoges and Scientific Director of the MESGO programme, and Thomas Junod, Head of UEFA Academy. They wished to thank, amongst others, all partners for their contribution to the MESGO programme and congratulate the participants for having successfully completed the 20-month course.
Keynote speaker at the ceremony was the Executive Secretary of the Council for the Enlarged Partial Agreement on Sport (EPAS), Sophie Kwasny. Sophie gave a speech to the graduates, highlighting in particular the values of solidarity and humanism which, today, more than ever, must be put forward and defended by the sports community.
Congratulations to the new graduates of MESGO VI: Runar Pahr Andresen, Angelo Chetcuti, Joanna Deagle, Sabina Fasciolo, Kim Hallberg, Boineelo Hardy, Lars Helmersson, Peter Jehle, Oleksandr Kucheriavyi, Jorge Mowinckel, Kobe Schepers, Jernej Smisl, Sarah Solémalé, Karim Souchu, Boris Stankov, Emma Sykes and Radu Visan.
From 10 to 14 October 2022, the MESGO VII participants were in Paris for the second session of the programme, which was dedicated to the design and regulation of competitions.
Organised by Sean Hamil, director of the Birkbeck Sport Business Centre, this second session was aimed at examining the external regulatory functions of sports governing bodies, particularly how they apply to the design and regulation of competitions.
Thank you to the Stade Français, Fédération Internationale de l’Automobile (FIA), Ligue Nationale de Rugby (LNR), Roland Garros and FIFA’s Paris branch for their warm welcome.
We would like also to thank all the speakers that came to Paris. Having representatives from FIFA, UEFA, ASOIF, FIA, LNR, French Tennis Federation, clubs (Lokomotiva Zagreb, KNVB, PSG) as well as Qanalytics, KPMG and Stats Perform was a key component of the week and allowed a powerful interaction with the MESGO participants.
During the week, participants had the opportunity to attend the UCI Track Cycling World Championships and to have an introduction to 5-a-side rugby.
The third MESGO session will be held in Brussels from 16 to 20 January 2023 and will be dedicated to the legal frameworks governing European sport.
The 30 MESGO participants, of 22 different nationalities, met in Lausanne last week. “Introduction to Global Sport Governance” was the main focus of this first session.
The first session of the MESGO 7th edition took place from 22 to 26 August 2022 and was co-directed by Nathalie Alaphilippe, lawyer at CDES and MESGO programme director and Jean-Philippe Bonardi, professor at HEC Lausanne. During this week, dedicated to the “Introduction to global sport governance”, the debates focused, among others, on the governance of national and international sports, on corporate governance issues and governance strategy.
MESGO VII participants were hosted by the Union of European Football Associations (UEFA), the International Olympic Committee (IOC), the Union Cycliste Internationale (UCI) and finally the International Basketball Federation (FIBA) where they had the opportunity to discuss a case study on FIBA vs Euroleague.
The MESGO VII group at the International Olympic Committee.
During this intense week, the participants had the chance to discuss and debate with senior leaders of the MESGO sports partners:
Giorgio Marchetti (deputy general secretary, UEFA)
Andreas Zagklis (secretary general, FIBA)
Martin Hausleitner (general secretary, EHF)
It was also an opportunity for the participants to listen and discuss with other high-level speakers from within and outside the sports sector and MESGO former participants:
Eric Ropert (managing director, French Ice Hockey Federation)
Kevin Ashby (Senior Digital Content Manager, UEFA)
Alex Phillips (consultant); Michal Buchel (CEO, International SAMBO Federation)
Ciska Du Plessis Austin (Strategic and Business Advisor, Cycling South Africa)
Many thanks to them for their availability and sharing their experience with the MESGO participants!
MESGO sessions are also an opportunity for participants to share special moments outside the classroom. For this first session, several team-building activities took place, including cooking class, wine tasting and an introduction to track cycling.
Next stop will be in Paris, 10 to 14 October 2022 for a second session dedicated to “Competition Design and Financial Sustainability”.
The sixth session of MESGO VI edition dedicated to Strategic Marketing and Communication took place in London from 28 February to 4 March 2022.
Directed by Roman Putsch, Head of Marketing Activities at UEFA, the objective of this session was to present various means of value creation linked to sports marketing, from the perspective of sports federations, brands and broadcasters.
During this week, MESGO participants had the opportunity to attend the presentations in the following locations across London:
Lord’s Cricket Ground
Tottenham Hotspur Stadium
Brentford Community Stadium
MESGO sessions are also an opportunity for participants to share special moments. Several team-building activities took place during the week, including a dinner, football game and a ping pong activity.
The next MESGO session will take place in New York from 26 to 29 April 2022 and will be dedicated to the American model of Sport. Then, the participants will travel to the West Coast for a session dedicated to Leadership and Innovation.