Category Archives: MESGO V

MESGO mourns the passing of Gurvan KERVADEC, Director General of the French Volleyball League.

It was with great sadness and emotion that we learned of the tragic death of Gurvan, MESGO V participant, at the age of 51.

His passion and dedication to sport in general, and basketball in particular, was reflected in his commitment both on and off the court.

A basketball player since the age of 9, Gurvan was also a youth basketball referee and U15 team coach for many years.

Off the court, he put his experience in sports management at the service of leading sports organisations.

He worked for the French Rugby Federation for 13 years, where his multiple, diverse skills (finance, human resources, management) enabled him to reach executive level as head of the sports department. Always ready for new challenges, he then took up the position of Administrative and Financial Director at Stade Français Paris, one of the major rugby clubs in the Top 14.

His desire to learn and share his knowledge and experience with others naturally led him to apply to MESGO, which he joined in September 2018, where, among his many contributions, he wrote a thesis on the social impact of sport, with a particular focus on the inclusion of people with physical disabilities.

After MESGO, Gurvan joined the French Volleyball League, where he held the position of General Manager since June 2020.

For the MESGO family, Gurvan will be remembered as a caring and passionate person with a strong sense of ethics.

The entire MESGO team extends its sincere condolences to his family, friends and colleagues.  Our thoughts are with them at this very difficult time.

MESGO V Graduation Week in Mainz

On 1 and 2 October 2021, MESGO V participants attended a two-day session on the Future of Sport. This session, initially scheduled to be in Beijing, corresponds to the second part of the 9th (and final) session of the fifth edition of the MESGO programme.

On 1 and 2 October 2021, MESGO V participants attended a two-day session on the Future of Sport. This session, initially scheduled to be in Beijing, corresponds to the second part of the 9th (and final) session of the fifth edition of the MESGO programme.

Co-directed by Holger Preuss, professor at the Johannes Gutenberg University in Mainz and Jean-Jacques Gouguet, professor at the University of Limoges, the objective was to introduce participants to scenario planning, climate change, new technology and its impact on sport governance.

The session concluded on 2 October, with 22 participants from the fifth edition of the Executive Master in Global Sport Governance (MESGO) receiving their degree certificates at the graduation ceremony in Mainz, chaired by Sean Hamil, director of the Birkbeck Sport Business Centre at the University of London.

Sean Hamil, Thomas Junod and Didier Primault.

Also speaking at the ceremony were Thomas Junod, Head of UEFA Academy and Didier Primault, General Director of CDES. They wished to thank, amongst others, all associated partners for their contribution to the MESGO programme as well as congratulate the participants for having successfully completed the 18-month course. A special tribute must be given to everybody involved within the organisation and structure of the MESGO, but we are especially proud of the participants who managed to remain motivated despite experiencing the difficult scenario of a global pandemic throughout the course of their studies. MESGO participants prove to be resourceful, tenacious and resilient; the qualities needed to be a successful and committed actor in the sporting environment.

Congratulations to the new MESGO V graduates: 2021,Didier Andrist, Irena Bakrevska Miloshevska, Robert Barczi, Katarzyna Biniaszczyk, Yashwanth Biyyala, Michal Buchel, Dimitris Davakis, Ciska Du Plessis Austin, Nerijus Dunauskas, Stuart Dykes, Alvaro Garcia-Alaman de la Calle, Nuno Moura, Gurvan Kervadec, Giel Kirkels, Pierre Locht, Anton Maliutin, Jonathan Martinez, Joanna Poulton, Yury Sadouski, Jovan Surbatovic, Lisa Wiederer, Ales Zavrl.

A two-day online session dedicated to Chinese Sport

On 28 and 29 September 2020, the first part of the 9th (and final) session of the fifth edition of the MESGO, initially scheduled in Beijing, took place online. Our sincerest appreciation goes to Beijing Sport University: MESGO partner for the Chinese online sessions.

Co-directed by Holger Preuss, professor at the Johannes Gutenberg University in Mainz and Jean-Jacques Gouguet, professor at the University of Limoges, the objective of this session was to introduce participants to the Chinese sport system.

During those two days, the participants had the opportunity to interact with a large panel of experts in their field, such as:

  • Jeanne Gloanec, journalist, Le vent de la Chine
  • Shengxin Li, Vice-Dean, Management School, Beijing Sport University
  • Xiaoqian Hu, professor, Tsinghua University, Beijing
  • Wu Dong, professor, Beijing Sport University
  • Pierre Justo, director, Asia TNS Sofres
  • Louis Liu, general secretary, Chinese Football Association
  • Andrew Mercer, acting general counsel and legal director, Asian Football Confederation
  • Romuald Nguyen, director, French Football Office, China
  • Wolfgang Maennig, professor, department of Economics, Hamburg University
  • Mengmeng Zhang, chief representative China, OL Groupe
  • Larry Zheng, vice president, Shankaï Sports
  • David Dongwei Yang, chief executive officer, HS Sports & Media / Operation partner of CITIC Capital

Round-table live discussion about CFA, the future of football in China and Asia – strategy and challenges: Louis Liu, general secretary, Chinese Football Association

Discussion about Chinese global strategy “belt and road project” and sport with Wolfgang Maennig, professor at Hamburg University

Round-table live discussion about Chinese investment in sport industry: Larry Zheng, vice president at Shankaï Sports.

A warm thank you to all the speakers for their high-level contributions to the session!

Participants also got the chance to take part in some virtual, fun and interactive social events, such as a live Qi Gong lesson and an initiation to traditional Chinese calligraphy.

The second part of this final MESGO V session will be conducted during a face-to-face seminar next March in Paris. The fundamental question of the future of sport will be addressed, notably through the consequences related to the COVID-19 crisis, the new sustainability model and what the repercussions are for sport and its governance.

Congratulations Gurvan!

Gurvan Kervadec, MESGO V graduate, has been appointed as Chief Executive Officer of the French Volleyball League.

He worked for thirteen years at the French Rugby Union, whilst occupied in various senior positions such as Management Control Officer, Head of Human Resources and Head of Sports Projects Management, amongst others. The last position he held was that of Chief Financial Officer at Stade Français, Paris.

His expertise, combined with his wealth of experience gained from working with various actors of the sports industry will be invaluable to the French Volleyball League.

On behalf of all the MESGO community we would like to wish him the best of success in his new position.

A MESGO week dedicated to ethics in sport

From 23 to 27 September 2019 the MESGO V participants were in Germany for Session 7 of the programme. Jointly directed by Dr Holger Preuss, Dr Mathias Schubert and Volker Bernardi from the Johannes Gutenberg University (JGU) in Mainz, the session covered several topics related to ethics in sport, such as corruption, sport for disabled athletes, anti-doping and environmental sustainability.

The session took place in various locations across Mainz and Frankfurt: the Johannes Gutenberg University, the Mainzer Golfclub, the German Olympic Sports Confederation (DOSB), the Opel Arena (Mainz 05 Stadium) and the Rowing Clubhaus Germania.

The session started at the Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz with an introduction to ethics and sport by Mike McNamee, professor at Swansea University.

In a second presentation, Professor Jim Parry (Charles University, Prague) focused on the integrity debate in sport.

The second day opened up with Brendan Schwab, executive director at World Players Association and former FIFPro vice-president who presented us the Human Rights of Players in World Sport.

Among other speakers, Anne Tiivas, chair and director at Safe Sport International, focussed on the protection of children, young people and adult athletes from all forms of non-accidental violence in sport.

At the German Olympic Sports Organisation: Welcome speech by Veronika Rücker, secretary general at the German Olympic Sports confederation.

Jens Sejer Andersen, international director of Play the Game, talked about initiatives to fight corruption in sport.

At the Opel Arena (Mainz 05 Stadium): Presentation about the Paralympic movement and the current challenges in disability sport by Natalia Dannenberg-Spreier, head of brand and engagement at the International Paralympic Committee.

In his presentation, Thomas Weikert, president of the International Tennis Table Federation, discussed the social responsibility of sports organisations.

The session ended at the Rowing Clubhaus Germania: Michelle Lemaître, head of sustainability and Olympic legacy at the International Olympic Committee, presented the IOC’s sustainability strategy and share her expertise in this field.

MESGO sessions are also an opportunity for participants to share special moments. Several team-building activities took place during the week, including wine tasting, golfing and climbing.

The next MESGO session, which will focus on the North American model, will take place in New York from 2 to 6 December 2019.

The MESGO team in Barcelona for session 6

MESGO V participants recently visited Barcelona for the sixth session of the programme. Francesc Solanellas, professor in sports management at Institut Nacional d’Educació Física de Catalunya (National Physical Education Institute of Catalonia) organised the session, which took place from 17 to 21 June and was dedicated to sports events.

The session began at INEFC on Monday 17 June, where Professor Francesc Solanellas introduced the Barcelona session and gave a presentation looking back on 25 years of sports events in Barcelona. Then, Iain Edmondson provided the city perspective with the case study of London and the 2012 Olympics. The day ended with a tour of the Olympic Ring by bike.

Tour of the Olympic Ring.

On Tuesday 18 June, the group visited the headquarters of Euroleague Basketball. The participants got to meet among other Xavier Gonzalez (former CEO of IPC), Jordi Bertomeu Orteu (chief executive and president of Euroleague Basketball), Roser Queraltó (chief business development officer) and Patrice Coste (commercial events manager at UEFA SA and former MESGO participant). Prior to the visit of FC Barcelona stadium and museum through the “Camp Nou Experience”, Javier Sobrino (strategic planning and innovation director at FC Barcelona) introduced the governance system and the strategy of FC Barcelona.

Participants at Euroleague Basketball.

At Euroleague Basketball: Presentation of the Euroleague model by Bertomeu Orteu, chief executive and president of Euroleague Basketball.

Presentation of the Turkish Airlines EuroLeague Final Four by Roser Queraltó, chief business development officer, Euroleague Basketball.

Presentation of the UEFA Nations League by Patrice Coste, commercial events manager at UEFA SA and former MESGO participant.

Wednesday’s session was held at the Barcelona World Race, where Jeremy Cottino from UEFA and former IOC, presented risk management in a global view to make participants more aware about the global threats that could happen in a sports event and the way to prevent them. John Bailey, international expert on crisis communication gave participants the methodology to collect, process and disseminate information required to address a crisis communication. The day ended with a catamaran cruise as part of the week’s social event.

Jeremy Cottino, programme manager, CEO Office, UEFA

John Bailey, managing consultant, Global Communications Consulting

The following day, the MESGO group went to the Circuit de Barcelona Catalunya.

Joan Fontseré (CEO of the Circuit), provided an introduction to the circuit. Then, moving on to MotoGP, Pau Serracanta i Marcet, managing director for the commercial area at Dorna Sports, gave a presentation on Dorna Sports.

Joan Fontseré, CEO, Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya

Pau Serracanta i Marcet, managing director for the commercial area, Dorna Sports.

Holger Preuss (Professor at Johannes Gutenberg University of Mainz) and Gilbert Felli (former head of the Sport Department at the IOC) concluded the session by presenting the post-event issues (legacy, knowledge transfer and economic impact).

Back at INEFC on the Friday, the participants defended their MESGO thesis subjects in front of a jury.

The next MESGO session, which will focus on ethics, will take place in Mainz and Frankfurt am Main (Germany) from 23 to 27 September 2019.

MESGO congratulates Leonid Oleinicenco

A participant from the MESGO V edition has been appointed to a new executive position.

Leonid Oleinicenco has has been elected as president of the Football Association of Moldova (FMF). Leonid Oleinicenco was previously the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the organisation. Unanimously elected at the association’s extraordinary congress in Chisinau, he succeeded Pavel Cebanu, who spent 22 years at the helm of Moldovan football. He pledged to give greater impetus to the development of football in the country.

The MESGO in London for the fifth session

The fifth session of MESGO V edition took place in London from 29 April to 3 May 2019. The session was dedicated to Strategic Marketing and directed by Tim Dignard, Manager of UEFA Champions League Sponsorship.

During this week, MESGO participants had the opportunity to attend the presentations in the following locations across London:

  • Lord’s Cricket Ground
  • Twickenham Stadium
  • Chelsea FC
  • BT Tower
  • The Shard

The first day of the marketing week was focused on marketing in general and how marketing activities are or should be applied to the world of sport.

Photo 1

Lord’s Cricket Ground: Presentation about the importance of a strong brand by Adrian Goldthorpe, Chief Executive Officer, Lothar Böhm Associates

Day 2 was dedicated to the sports fan. We dived deeper into the field of digital and social marketing, an area that is becoming more and more important for any sports organisation.

Photo 2

At Twickenham Stadium: Presentation about CRM and the importance of data by Pénélope Tomasi CRM Manager at UEFA.

The following day we took a deep dive into sponsorship from three unique yet equally important angles: the agency, brand and rights holder perspective.

Photo 3

At Chelsea FC: Presentation by Adrian Farina, Head of Marketing at Europe Marketing Visa about Visa and Women’s Football – Purpose, commitment, authenticity

Photo 4

The group visited the facilities of Chelsea FC Stamford Bridge

During the fourth day the focus was entirely on the broadcast environment and broadcast rights – for many rights holders a very important source of income but also the window through which to bring the sport to a wider audience.

Photo 5

Round-table discussion about the future broadcast landscape – BT Tower. The speakers from left to right: Andrew Haworth, Managing Director Strategy and Content, BT; Rhys Beer, Sports Programming Lead, Facebook; Frank Dunne, Chief Footbal Writer, SportBusiness Group; Guy-Laurent Epstein, Marketing Director, UEFA; Ioris Francini, Co-President, WME IMG.

The final day of this MESGO session was focus on the new trends that are re-shaping the way we look at marketing. Influencer marketing has quickly become one of the biggest tactics to reach targeted audiences, leveraged by brands and sporting bodies alike.

Photo 6

At the Shard: Presentation by Arron Shepherd, Co-Founder and Chief Storyteller, The Goat Agency about the rise of influencer marketing.

The next MESGO session which will take place in Barcelona from 17 to 21 June 2019 will focus on sports events.

The fourth MESGO V session took place in Strasbourg

The MESGO V participants were in Strasbourg from 11 to 15 March 2019 for their fourth session, which focused on the legal frameworks in European sport. Codirected by Nathalie Alaphilippe and Jean-Christophe Breillat, both lawyers at CDES.

The participants visited the Ligue de Football du Grand Est on the Monday for an introduction to this legal week. Then, they received a warm welcome from the Racing Club de Strasbourg Alsace on the Tuesday, when the CAS arbitrator Efraim Barak presented the management of a legal department and Loïc Alves, lawyer at the European Handball Federation and MESGO IV graduate, explained the importance of sound proceedings in disciplinary matters.

The Wednesday was dedicated to EU law. Hosted by the Council of Europe, one of the MESGO partner, the participants got to meet among other Helen Keller (Judge at the European Court of Uman Rights), Jeroen Schokkenbroek (Director of Anti-Discrimination at the Council of Europ), Agata Dziarnowska (Policy Officer at the European Commission) and Julien Zylberstein (Senior Legal Counsel at UEFA and former MESGO graduate).

Then the MESGO participants had the opportunity to visit the European Parliament and to discuss with Members of the European Parliament: Santiago Fisas from Spain-Co-chair of the Sports Intergroup, Tiziana Beghin from Italy-vice Chair of the Sports Intergroup and Marc Tarabella, co-chair of the Sports Intergroup.


European social dialogue was the main topic discussed on the Thursday, before moving on to EU lobbying on the final day.

As usual, a team-building event was organised during the week – in this case a dinner in a traditional Alsatian brasserie “le Tigre” when we shared some delicious flambé tarts.

The next session, dedicated to strategic marketing, will be held in London from 29 April to 3 May 2015.

MESGO V participants in Rome for third session

From Monday 28 January to 1 February 2019, the MESGO V participants were in Rome for the third 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 third session was aimed at examining the external regulatory functions of sports governing bodies, particularly how they apply to the design and regulation of competitions.

The MESGO sessions were held in various locations including the Italian Football Federation, the Olympic Stadium Roma and the Olympic Centre Giulio Onesti where our MESGO graduate – Fiona May, Ex olympian medallist in Track and Field – took part to the session as speaker.

It had also been an opportunity for the participants to listen and discuss with two representatives of two MESGO sport partners namely Michael Heselschwerdt, UEFA Head of Club Competitions and Markus Glaser, EHF Chief Sports Officer. The participants were also delighted to meet Frédéric Bertrand, FIA Director, Circuit Racing Championship Department, as well as David Conn, a journalist for The Guardian.

We would like also to thank all the speakers that came to Rome. Having representatives from FIFA, UEFA, FIGC, CONI, national federations as well as EHF, FIFPro, ECA and CIES was a key component of the week and allowed a powerful interaction with the MESGO participants.

The Thursday evening was dedicated to the visit of the Stadio di Dominiziano, followed by a dinner in a traditional Romanian restaurant as part of the social event.

The fourth MESGO session will be held in Strasbourg next month from 11 to 15 March and will be dedicated to the legal frameworks governing European sport.

Photo 1At the Italian Football Federation (FIGC): Presentation about the future issues in financial integrity in sport by Jan Peter Dogge, Integrity manager, Royal Netherlands Football Association and MESGO III graduate

Photo 2At the Italian National Olympic Committee: Welcome by Giovanni Malago, the CONI President and Diego Nepi Molineris, the CONI Director of Marketing

Photo 3Presentation about Competition design innovation in motorsports by Frédéric Bertrand, Director of Circuit Championships Department – Fédération Internationale de l’Automobile (Olympic Center Giulio Onesti)

Photo 4Presentation about the organisation and structure of Serie A by Marco Brunelli, CIO, Serie A

Photo 5Visit of the Stadio di Dominiziano, Piazza Navona