March 2017


By Ask Vest Christiansen and John Gleaves

In the United States, politicians have returned to doing (well, more or less) what they are used to doing. Amidst the normal debates over taxes, laws, and partisanship, at least one member of the United States’ House of Representatives remembered the rule stating that every doping scandal must be followed by a hearing with lots of cameras, preferably sport celebrities, and resolute promises to finally solve the problem of drugs in sport. Thus on February 27, 2017, Olympians Michael Phelps and Adam Nelson joined Travis Tygert, the CEO for the United States Anti Doping Agency, and WADA officials Richard Budgett and Rob Koehler.

Read the rest of the editorial here.

Anti-Doping Outside of WADA

By Emmanuel Macedo, California State University, Fullerton.

At the turn of the 21st century, WADA provided international sport much needed unity in the face of an overlapping, confusing, and porous anti-doping movement. However, the agreement to put rules in place that exclude certain drug use and methods is not to say that the sport world suddenly procured a single set of policies. Instead, some sport organizations, like those in the United States, adopted different policies and methods of legislation (i.e. unions/players associations). The below table compares the prohibited list, sanctions, and testing methods of three major sport organizations: the National Football League (NFL), Major League Baseball (MLB), and the National Basketball Association (NBA) with the policies of WADA. As scholars have mapped WADA’s anti-doping system, analyzing every detail of the paradigmatic approach, this table reveals the similarities and inconsistencies (of testing, sanctions, and prohibited lists) with other functioning systems.

Read the rest of the commentary here.  

Why can’t they just be friends? - An Aristotelian interpretation of the relationship among stakeholders in the anti-doping effort

By Francisco Javier Lopez Frias, Assistant Professor of Kinesiology and Research Associate in the Rock Ethics Institute, Pennsylvania State University

In  a  recent  interview,  the  tennis  star  Garbine  Muguruza  said: In  tennis, its  difficult  to  be  friends between  women,  we  are  very  competitive  [...]  we  all  hate  each  other.  Literally.  And  who  says  the opposite  is  lying  (Izaguirre,  2016). Muguruzas  words  illustrate  the  win-at-all-cost  mentality  that  anti-doping  proponents  regard  as  one  of  the  main  causes  of  doping.  By  adopting  such  a  mentality, professional  athletes  become  willing  to  do  anything  to  gain  a  competitive  advantage.  Thiscreates  an atmosphere  that  hinders  the  display  of  friendship  (Hyland, 1978).  The  lack  of  friendship  and  the prevalence  of  defection  and  distrust  among  stakeholders  is  certainly  one  of  the  main  challenges  of WADAs  anti-doping  efforts  (Houlihan,  2015).  Such  a  challenge  does  not  only  have  to  do with  the athletes  mentality  but  also  with  how  International  Federations  (IFs)  use  sport  as  a  means  to  pursue financial and political goals. The recent Russian doping scandal is a proof of it. If WADA, IFs, and athletes do  not  commit  and  cooperate  to  the  cause  of  abolishing  doping,  the  pursuit  of  a  doping-free  sport  is doomed to fail (Waddington, 2011).

Read the rest of the commentary here.

INDR 2017 Conference – registration is now open

As most readers of this Newsletter will be aware of, the 2017 INDR conference will take place in Aarhus, Denmark on 24-25 August.

Authors from any field are encouraged to present research that relate to the conference theme or to themes related to the INDR mission. This year’s theme is “Doping in sport, doping in society – lessons, themes, and connections”.

Deadline for submitting abstract to be considered for the conference is 14 April 2017, via the INDR online submission; Easychair. It should be straightforward to use the system, but in case you need instructions for using the Easy Chair submission system, you will find them here.

In addition, conference registration is now open via this link: Early bird Registration before 15 May is 1725.00 DDK (= approx. 230 €) – ordinary. Student price is 1350.00 DDK (= approx. 180 €). After 15 May prices are 250 € and 200 € respectively.