The IAAF Council meeting on July 31 was all about providing examples of how, under Seb Coe’s leadership, the Council begins to move the sport forward. Providing schedules of upcoming events in 2018, announcing a joint ventures to upgrade the quality of content created to promote the sport, and providing athletes more opportunities to tell their personal stories.
Seb Coe believes that much of the attraction of the sport is in the personal stories of success and challenges sought by many of the athletic stars of the sport. In trying to attract another generation to the sport, the ability for the young fans to see upgraded coverage of the sport is part of what is needed.
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The 210th IAAF Council Meeting took place in London and was chaired by IAAF President Sebastian Coe.
This was the traditional one-day gathering ahead of the 51st IAAF Congress (2-3 Aug) and IAAFWorld Championships London 2017 (4-13 Aug) which are being hosted by the British capital. A further Council meeting will be held on the last day of the World Championships (13 Aug).
“Today was about the empowerment. Empowerment of those that we are elected to serve and better promoting athletics to sports fans,” commented Sebastian Coe. “Our discussions concentrated on a number of encouraging developments and initiatives which will increase athletes’ influence at the very heart of the sport’s decision making process. We also approved the establishment of a joint venture broadcasting production company to better present the sport and entertain the fans around the world.”
Broadcasting joint venture
Council approved an agreement which has been reached between IAAF and ITN Productions to form a joint venture company for Host Broadcasting and Media Production.
The company which is expected to commence operations in January 2018 will incorporate traditional and digital production and 24/7 storytelling to cover the activities of the whole athletics family in addition to the competitive events.
The aim is to develop production capabilities that will be used by local organising committees around the world to ensure consistent high level broadcasts and production standards.
Youth Engagement & Social Media Commission
Council approved a recommendation of the commission to establish a Youth Council with members from all areas and making sure they have a seat at the table of all IAAF groups where decisions are made.
Council approved a recommendation of the committee to establish IAAF Development Scholarships for women which will be funded by the IAAF. This is an opportunity for women’s leadership development across the sport with representatives from each of the six areas attending the biennial IAAF Congress, Convention and World Championships. A pilot scholarship programme is already underway in London.
Athletes’ Commission elections
Council were also briefed about the work of the Athletes’ Commission and the elections for six places on the IAAF Athletes’ Commission which will run from 1-12 August with all athletes accredited for the IAAF World Championships London 2017 eligible to vote.
The IAAF Athletes’ Commission represents the link between athletes and the governing body, ensuring the voice of the athletes is heard and fed into decision-making processes.
IAAF Taskforce for Russia
Council discussed the latest interim report of the independent IAAF Taskforce about the reinstatement process concerning the Russian Athletics Federation (RusAF) which was delivered to Council by Taskforce independent chairperson Rune Andersen.
The Taskforce considered that material progress had been made towards reaching several of the conditions established by Council for reinstatement of RusAF to IAAF membership, but those conditions have not yet been met in full, and several important steps remain outstanding. The IAAFCouncil unanimously agreed to continue the suspension back at the beginning of July.
This report has gone to Congress to support the proposal to continue the suspension of RusAF’s membership of the IAAF until all of the conditions set by Council for the cure of RusAF’s breaches of the objects of the IAAF and for the consequent reinstatement of RusAF’s membership have been met.
Council approved the following:
IAAF World Athletics Series
IAAF World U20 Championships Tampere 2018
IAAF World Race Walking Team Championships Taicang 2018
IAAF Continental Cup Ostrava 2018
IAAF World Indoor Tour 2018
IAAF World Challenge 2018
Youth Olympic Games
Buenos Aires 2018 Youth Olympics