June 29-30, 2022. The 6th session of the CSCF-coordinated ERASMUS+ project on investigating and tackling sports manipulations, this time hosted by the Georgian Ministry of Culture, Sport and Youth, marks the end of the project’s implementation phase and will close with a public conference on 4 November 2022 at the FIFPro Headquarters.
The Georgian awareness-raising session marked a groundbreaking and crucial development for Georgian sport integrity with feedback illustrating an immediate impact extending beyond the event itself. Local and international representatives from project partner organizations, including the Ministry of Culture, Sport and Youth of Georgia, the Parliamentary Committee for Sport Affairs, the State Security Service, the football federation, as well as an international partner, the Global Lottery Monitoring System (GLMS), the Finnish Center for Sport Integrity (FINCIS) and CSCF experts, FIFPRO as the project’s supporting partner, Interpol and the Council of Europe, all contributed with valuable input to the session.
The event was lauded by Georgian stakeholders as an unprecedented and singular local event having a direct impact on law enforcement, prosecutors and other key stakeholders. Similar positive sentiments had been echoed by all 5 preceding country partners regarding their respective national sessions in Estonia, Finland, Sweden, Cyprus and Malta.
A successful and engaging workshop in Tbilisi
The Georgian session brought together leading international and national decision-makers focusing on the Georgian situation, gathering over 50 local participants and facilitating a lively exchange of knowledge and ideas. The participants, all principal actors working directly or indirectly to combat the match-fixing phenomenon locally and internationally, received educational interventions and had an opportunity to develop early proposals for the next steps in investigations and regulatory actions to combat match-fixing.
Ms. Teo Baramidze – Acting Head of the Legal Department - Ministry of Culture, Sport, and Youth of Georgia – mentioned during the event that although developments are taking place,
“the public administrations and all the national and international stakeholders need more effort to fight against manipulations of sport competitions”.
Moreover, Mr. Norbert Rubicsek – CSCF Director and IntegriSport Next E+ Manager – highlighted that “Integrisport is a CSCF-developed concept supporting law enforcement and judiciary in helping them investigate and prosecute criminals who benefit illegally through sports manipulations”.
While the first day focused on the education of various topics related to the manipulation of sports competitions, the second day of the event focused on discussions for the next steps and diverse points of view. Representatives of local law enforcement, judicial authorities, and other stakeholders from the public sector shared their progress and challenges, providing all national stakeholders with a well-rounded perspective of the different procedures and approaches utilized in the fight against this phenomenon. The Finnish Center for Integrity in Sport (FINCIS), Finland’s national platform coordinator, as well as the international speakers, all provided alternative national and international perspectives for consideration by the Georgian beneficiaries, further enhancing the quality of the event.
The event rounded off with a peer-to-peer exchange of views, providing an ideal space for the participants to share best practices and openly discuss points of view regarding setting guidelines, cooperation, collecting evidence and information, and using this information and evidence in investigations of manipulation cases in sport.
Save the date: IntegriSport Next closing conference on 4 November 2022
IntegriSport Next will conclude its second edition on 4 November 2022, with a closing conference on Sport Manipulation and Criminal Activities in Sport, hosted by FIFPro, in Hoofddorp, the Netherlands.
CSCF, together with the conference host, FIFPro, have the pleasure of extending an invitation to you, and we sincerely hope you can join us in person or online.