You are here

Webinar: Reimagining the future of sport and development

A woman watching the sportanddev webinar on a laptop
Copyrights: Swiss Academy for Development (Photo)

Webinar: Reimagining the future of sport and development

sportanddev hosted a webinar on the future of sport and development on International Olympic Day.

The International Platform on Sport and Development (sportanddev) recently published a call for articles on the future of sport and development. We received a record number of responses from across the globe, spanning continents and cultures. Given the widespread interest and importance of ensuring that sport can better serve society in a post-COVID world, we held a webinar on the topic.

The webinar was moderated by Professor Marion Keim (Foundation for Sport, Development and Peace) and Eli Wolff (Power of Sport Lab). To set the scene, Ben Sanders from sportanddev provided an overview of the recent call for articles. Overall, 55 articles were received in English and French. From these, sportanddev identified 10 key themes that have implications for the future of sport and development.

Panel presentations

The first panellist was Rekha Dey, a sport for development specialist from India, who outlined the value of sport for employment, including the need for competency frameworks and occupational standards, as well as the relevance of indigenous games.

Oliver Dudfield, head of sport for development and peace at the Commonwealth Secretariat, led an engaging presentation called ‘Scale. Digitalisation. Rights. Three questions in reimagining the role of sport and development’, weaving indigenous storytelling creatively into his narrative.

Maria Bobenreith, executive director at Women Win, presented ‘No Regret Moves in Reimagining the Great Correction for Sport for Development’, outlining six key steps to transform the sector.

Warren Lucas, a young leader in sport for development from South Africa, provided a youth perspective on the sustainable development goals and future opportunities for sport and development actors and individuals.

Ben Howard, program manager of the Pacific Sports Partnership, provided insights on: the long-term implications of investments in sport; the need to adopt an integrated approach to sport; the need to ensure sport is more disaster-ready; and how COVID-19 has shaped approaches in the field.

The webinar stimulated engagement among the audience, who were able to pose questions to the panellists, contributing to robust debate on how we reimagine the future of sport and development.

Global reach

The webinar was held on 23 June to mark International Olympic Day and was well received by a diverse range of stakeholders. The following user statistics illustrate the global reach of sportanddev.

  • 720 people registered on EventBrite from 94 countries and territories
  • 359 live viewers on Zoom from 68 countries and territories
  • 11,936 people reached via Facebook and 531 engagements
  • Women 25-34 were the top audience engaged via Facebook

Moving forward

Following the webinar, sportanddev has been publishing an article every day for 10 days (starting on 24 June) covering each of the 10 themes identified in responses to our call for articles. We will follow this up with a comprehensive report on the articles and webinar itself. In the longer term, sportanddev will continue to work with partners to facilitate debate, advocacy and action on the future role of sport and development.

This is just the beginning of a longer journey, which we hope you will be a part of.

sportanddev would like to thank the moderators, panellists, attendees and everyone who helped to make this webinar a success. We plan to host more webinars in the future so watch this space!


Article type



Sunday, July 5, 2020 - 11:49