London, March 22 (IANS) For the first time in the history of World Athletics, the global governing body, it is reaching out to the entire international athletics community to participate in a Global Conversation and contribute insights and feedback that will shape the future direction of the sport for the next decade.
This year World Athletics has committed to developing a World Plan for Athletics 2022-2030 in consultation with its member federations and other key interest groups, including athletes, coaches, officials, fans, schools, meeting directors, partners, and media, it said in a statement on Monday.
The World Plan will be a key document for all involved in the sport, setting out a roadmap for the growth and development of athletics through to 2030.
“Its purpose is to listen to the athletics community, to identify where the sport stands now throughout the world, and to establish a vision and direction for the period through to 2030, setting out how both World Athletics, its member federations and area associations, and other people involved in athletics can work together to develop and grow the sport across the world. The plan will contain clear roles and responsibilities, timelines, measurable outcomes and resource and budget implications,” read the statement.
By initiating the ‘Global Conversation for the Future of Athletics’, World Athletics wants to give everybody involved in athletics, no matter their background, role or location, an opportunity to be heard.
“Today, we are embarking on an unprecedented Global Conversation with all those who love our sport and want to have a say in its future. The global pandemic has highlighted the need and desire of governments and communities to keep fit and healthy. Athletics, as the most accessible and participated sport on the planet, has a key role in helping to achieve this,” said World Athletics president Sebastian Coe.
“Through this global engagement phase, I want to hear from everyone who cares about athletics and about health and fitness. Our strength as a sport lies in the diversity of our community and we need to hear the voices of our key stakeholders in all of our 214 countries and territories in order to develop a plan that fully represents our global aspirations for athletics to grow and thrive over the coming years,” said the double Olympic gold medallist in 1500m.
This worldwide campaign will run for a six-week period in the form of a survey available in 12 different languages. The responses will help to give World Athletics a clear understanding of the challenges and opportunities that lie ahead and how the athletics community envisions the present and future of the sport. Through this open stakeholder-centric project, World Athletics wants to drive a fruitful conversation by asking people to embrace the chance to speak up and help to bring further significant and necessary changes and developments to the number one Olympic sport.
A draft plan will then be developed for presentation to the World Athletics Council mid-year. Once accepted, a final plan will be distributed to the member federations for formal approval at the biennial World Athletics Congress in November 2021.
The process is being overseen by the World Plan Working Group, which comprises seven Council Members, chaired by former triple jump world record-holder Willie Banks, assisted by the Sports Business Group at Deloitte.