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Sports Think Tank - A Busy End of Year

"A sports think tank would be a great legacy from the 2012 games, enabling future generations to benefit from long term, well researched, and evidence-based sports policy making in the UK" Seb Coe

Sports Think Tank

Sports Think Tank

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A Busy End of Year

Posted: Tue, 27 Dec 2016 09:28 by Andy Reed

A remarkable year for all sorts of reasons, but 2016 just didn't know when to stop producing stories and news.

As we head towards the end of the year the excellent summary from Dan Roan - 2016 The Year Sport Refused to stop is probably the best place to start and finish. It can't be bettered to summarise what in general has been a good year for sport 'on the pitch/track/road/court etc but not so great outside.

I don't need to run through all the stories of the past year if you have read this great summary but I do think from the past we can roughly see what 2017 may look like. I do this with the simple caveat that almost everything everybody predicted for 2016 was probably wrong - BREXIT, Leicester City, Trump.. but we have to start somewhere.

As we ended the year on major announcements from UK Sport and Sport England on their next funding cycles I am guessing this will be in sharp focus in early 2017. The sports that lost out from UK Sport No Compromise funding have already started to petition and appeal. We will be hearing a lot more about this through the winter and spring I am sure. We will be publishing more as details emerge. Likewise, the Sport England core funding means plenty of cuts ahead for NGBs but possible growth elsewhere in the system as the shift from core to new markets and physical activity moves from strategy idea to funding reality. The new Governance code kicks in from April and new strategies for CSPs, Volunteering, Workforce and Coaching take shape.

The scandals that hit sport will continue to have an impact on the work of sports bodies and government. We know DCMS would love to work on areas of their choosing but headlines bring them back to the old chestnuts - doping, football governance, listed events, Premier League grassroots investment 'safe-standing' etc. I did remark recently that Ministerial team meetings sound increasingly the same as those in the mid 90s!

Lastly although not a central topic of debate for most sports fans or even top of the list of issues yet - will be BREXIT. It dominates most politics for the foreseeable future and sport cannot escape. We are a genuinely successful global business leader and the impact will be profound if uncertain.

At the Sports Think Tank we are taking the lead for the sector on this and held our first top level meetings in December to bring all of the sports world together to make sure DCMS and HMG understand what we want and need to make a success of BREXIT for the sector. We will be publishing reports and recommendations and consulting widely. If you want to let us have your thoughts at any time drop us a line. A proper online consultation will be available before the government triggers Article 50.

So for sports 'fans' 2016 had so many highlights to look back on but sports policy makers the difficult issues just kept rolling in. We are hoping in 2017 we can get back on the front foot again and not dealing with issues of doping, cheating, violence, and corruption.

We are looking forward to a busy 2017. We only exist to make sport a better place by influencing policy making through best practise, shared experiences and evidence from across our sector and others around the world. We source our work and evidence on the basis of what YOU are doing and make sure those making the decisions hear about it. Keep sharing your stories, evidence and best practise. We will continue to be amazed, learn and challenge. Working together we can achieve a great deal in 2017

We wish all our supporters and friends a Happy New Year.

Tags: Year Of Sport, Sports Think Tank

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