Posted Monday 9 November 2020
Kingston University anti-doping expert Professor Andrea Petroczi will take part in a panel discussion exploring athletes' views on the impact doping has on elite sport at a virtual conference next month.
The second annual Clean Sport Insight Forum, organised by the Clean Sport Alliance as part of the RESPECT project, will bring together athletes, policymakers and anti-doping researchers on 8-9 December to discuss a range of anti-doping topics and issues.
Those attending will hear about emerging research and practice in clean sport - which will cover themes such as the barriers to competing clean and the latest advances in anti-doping education - as well as hearing about the vision for the future of clean sport, including a presentation on the World Anti-Doping Agency's education strategy.
The online conference will provide an opportunity for anyone interested in the topic of doping in sport to hear more from both athletes and the bodies that regulate them, Professor of Public Health Andrea Petroczi said.
"Ensuring the athletes' voice is heard is key to ensuring anti-doping research, policy and practice work hand in hand to support and promote a clean sport environment," she said. "The World Anti-Doping Agency, as well as the anti-doping community, are looking at how to increase the involvement of athletes and practitioners in research going forward and that has been a key part of the work we have been doing through the Clean Sport Alliance."
Professor Petroczi will participate in a discussion around the meaning of 'clean' in elite sport with a group of international athletes and members of national anti-doping organisations (NADOs) during the conference, focusing on the results of a study that will be published shortly examining the views of athletes from across five European countries.
The athletes who will join Professor Petroczi on the panel were recruited as co-researchers during the project by their respective NADOs, going on to interview 77 other elite athletes who took part in 12 athlete-led national focus groups.
"What we wanted to do in this study was to give athletes a voice to share their thoughts on the meaning of competing clean and about clean performance enhancement - through this work we hope to provide a platform in which a large section of the athletic community can contribute to the debate around doping in sport.
"It's critically important that the results from this project send a clear signal that doping cannot be dealt with in isolation. At the end of the day, doping is not a drug problem - doping is rule-breaking which threats the integrity of sport, along with other forms of cheating. We need to place doping in the broader scope of integrity to progress."
The two-day online event is open to anyone interested in sport and doping or social science. Those registering for the free programme will gain access to a range of materials and of online talks which will be released on a weekly basis in the run-up to the live event.
During the conference, attendees will also hear about the latest phase of the RESPECT project, co-funded by the Erasmus+ programme of the European Union. The new three-year RESPECT-P study, which follows on from the first RESPECT project, is focused on understanding the perspectives of para-athletes, as part of wider work that aims to empower the anti-doping community through cooperative action.