Over the course of 2016, there were many, wide-ranging, contacts with WADA. There were almost daily consultations about the correct management of Dutch doping violations, which is monitored by WADA. Collaboration with WADA is close and structural.
Like every year, a response to the draft version of the prohibited list was sent to WADA in the summer. The Doping Authority coordinates the Dutch response on behalf of the NOC*NSF, the NOC*NSF Athletes Committee and the Ministry of Health, Welfare and Sport. Once again, it was pointed out that the prohibited list must have a sound practical and scientific basis. We also participated in a meeting of the scientific advisory group in the context of the Council of Europe convention on this subject.
WADA Education Committee
Bart Coumans has been appointed to the WADA Education Committee for three years (2016-2018). This committee met on 31 March and 1 April in Montreal. In addition, there was a teleconference on October 6 for the funding of research projects as part of the WADA Social Science Research Programme.
WADA Athletes Committee
Chiel Warners, the chair of the NOC*NSF Athletes Committee and a member of the NOC*NSF board, was appointed – in part pursuant to his nomination by the Doping Authority – to the WADA Athletes Committee for a period of three years (2017-2019). Chiel Warners and the Doping Authority have made agreements about exchanges of information and support from the Doping Authority.
WADA Prohibited List Expert Group
Cees-Rein van den Hoogenband, the chief medic of NOC*NSF and TeamNL was – in part pursuant to his nomination by the Doping Authority – appointed to the Expert Group that formulates advice and recommendations annually for the WADA board about the global Prohibited List. This appointment is – for the time being – for one year (2017). Cees-Rein van den Hoogenband and the Doping Authority have made agreements about exchanges of information and support from the Doping Authority.
Social Science Research
In cooperation with the Doping Authority, Radboud University Nijmegen is conducting a two-year study of the effect of ethical training on anti-doping attitudes among up-and-coming athletes. This study was launched officially on 1 April 2016. A pilot project was conducted among up and coming athletes in 2016, the first steps were taken towards the development of the interventions and athletes were recruited for the study. The actual study will begin in 2017.
WADA – ADO Symposium
The Doping Authority attended the annual WADA - ADO Symposium in Lausanne. The symposium covered a wide range of topics and there were a large number of other meetings and events in the fringes of the symposium. The Doping Authority was a member of a panel on cooperation between International Federations and National Anti-Doping Organisations. The ADO Symposium has evolved into the annual event at which most of the world's anti-doping organisations meet to discuss and promote developments in the field.
As part of WADA's 'Sociological Research Programme', a research proposal was submitted and approved in 2013 in collaboration with four other NADOs with supervision from the University of Potsdam. The study focuses on potential performance indicators for NADOs. The researchers from Potsdam have run into delays and so the project had not yet been completed at the end of 2016. On behalf of all the NADOs concerned, the Doping Authority plays an advisory and coordinating role.
International collaboration on Intelligence & Investigations
The international Intelligence & Investigations working group established in 2014 at the initiative of WADA continued its work in 2016. The group consists mainly of intelligence officers and/or intelligence analysts. At the meetings organised in previous years at the initiative of WADA, the members of the group informed one another about new developments and initiatives relating to Intelligence & Investigations and exchanged the latest information. A range of cases were also discussed and agreements were made about the collection and exchange of intelligence relating to doping investigations and international collaboration on those investigations. Because not all anti-doping organisations are structured on the same lines and/or have the same statutory competencies, the group's work includes a very strong emphasis on how the information is used and the legal implications of sharing and using information. The smaller group has been established on the basis of the international Intelligence & Investigations working group. That smaller group consists of leading organisations that have extensively structured the Intelligence & Investigations process. The group consists of intelligence officers from the Doping Authority, NADA, AEPSAD, ADN, USADA, UKAD, CADF and WADA. WADA began in 2016 on the implementation of a Whistleblower Policy (WBP) and the implementation of software to record intelligence so that it can be linked and accessed at the global level. The intention is to share experience with the WBP and the software with the international I&I members.
WADA NADO Working Group
The Doping Authority is represented on this working group, which advises on developments at WADA that affect the interests and the position of NADOs. The views and opinions of the working group are reported to the Foundation Board and many of them are included in the policies of WADA. The working group met twice in 2016, once in Montreal and once in London.
WADA Think Tank
The doping problems in Russia and in international athletics, which emerged in part due to the efforts of WADA, also led to many questions about how WADA had acted in this respect and about the WADA administrative structure. There is broad consensus that the present WADA administrative structure (with a board consisting of sports organisations and governments on a 50/50 basis) merits scrutiny. In order to accelerate the discussion in this respect, WADA established a Think Tank on which the Doping Authority was also represented. The Think Tank organised a day for discussing a range of issues on the basis of various presentations.
WADA Compliance Questionnaire Working Group
In the years to come, WADA will be focusing extensively on the extent to which the various stakeholders (Anti-Doping Organisations) comply with the requirements set out in the World Anti-Doping Code. WADA has established a compliance team for this purpose. An important instrument in this area is a detailed questionnaire for the assessment of compliance by the ADOs. The Doping Authority was involved in intensive collaboration on the development of this questionnaire.
Council of Europe
CAHAMA and Monitoring Group
Once again in 2016, the Doping Authority was very active on the international stage. The activities of the Doping Authority target two objectives in this area: the Doping Authority wants to collect up-to-date current knowledge and to influence the international anti-doping policy.
We attended three meetings of the CAHAMA (Ad hoc European Committee for the World Anti-Doping Agency). The CAHAMA mission is:
- To examine the issues concerning relations between the Council of Europe, its Member States and the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA), and to decide on a common position, when possible, on these issues;
- To draw up, if necessary, opinions for the Committee of Ministers of the Council of Europe on these issues, including the budgetary elements;
- To periodically revise the mandate of members of the WADA Foundation Board appointed by the Council of Europe.
The work of CAHAMA in 2016 focused mainly on decision-making pursuant to the publication of the reports of the Independent Commission and the Independent Person (in other words, the first McLaren report) on doping practices in Russia. In addition, the plans of WADA for a new testing method, including the associated sanctions, with respect to compliance with the Code, and the plans of the IOC for the establishment of an Independent Testing Authority, were high on the agenda. The Doping Authority also attended two meetings of the Monitoring Group, which focuses on monitoring the implementation of the Anti-Doping Convention of the Council of Europe, and developing and improving anti-doping systems and structures.
In the context of the 'Expert Group on Education' of the Council of Europe, the Doping Authority attended the meetings on 22-23 February (Bonn) and 12-13 October (Malta).
The Doping Authority also participated in the 'Advisory Group on Legal Issues' of the Council of Europe in Bonn on 24 February 2016 and the 'Advisory Group on Compliance' of the Council of Europe in Cyprus on 3 November 2016.
An evaluation chaired by the Doping Authority was conducted on behalf of the Council of Europe in 2016 of the anti-doping policy of the United Kingdom. Like the Netherlands, the United Kingdom has ratified the Anti-Doping Convention of the Council of Europe. Member states are free to submit a request to assess whether the country meets all the obligations under the Convention. The UK NADO asked for an evaluation of this kind. A team of experts talked to a range of stakeholders in the United Kingdom and subsequently reported to the Council of Europe.
Ad Hoc Expert Group on Independent Doping Panels
The Council of Europe wants to contribute to the independence of the disciplinary proceedings in doping cases and to the quality of the disciplinary proceedings. An Expert Group that included the Doping Authority was formed for that purpose. The Expert Group formulated a number of recommendations and presented them to the Council of Europe.
Institute for National Anti-Doping Organisations – iNADO
The Doping Authority joined iNADO immediately after this umbrella organisation was established in 2012. In 2016, iNADO continued to develop its role as the knowledge institute and the representative of the National Anti-Doping Organisations affiliated to it. The Doping Authority contributed in many ways to the work of iNADO and it has also been a member of the board since 2016. We attended the iNADO meeting in Lausanne preceding the WADA – ADO Symposium.
International Anti-Doping Arrangement - IADA
The Doping Authority was present at the annual meeting of this group of countries. In early 2016, South Africa decided to leave the arrangement, since when IADA has included ten countries. The present Arrangement will be in place from 2015 to 2018.
NADO Leaders Summits
After the publication of the second report on Russian doping practices (written by Richard McLaren, who was appointed as the Independent Person in this matter by WADA), a number of developed NADOs decided to meet to discuss the implications of this report. The first meeting took place in Copenhagen and the meeting ended with the issuing of a detailed statement on behalf of the thirteen NADOs present about the steps these NADOs deemed necessary to tackle the problems that had been identified. A second meeting followed in the autumn, this time in Bonn, to discuss developments since the first meeting. A press release was issued at the end of this meeting on behalf of the nineteen NADOs present on this occasion. The joint position was extensively quoted in media around the world and the influence on the policy of sports organisations is evident.
Erasmus Project FAIR
The Doping Authority is a partner in a three-year (2017-2019) project entitled 'Forum for Anti-Doping in Recreational Sports' (FAIR). The project was initiated by Europe Active. The focus is on improving prevention programmes in fitness/recreational sport and the regulation of sports nutrition supplements in European countries.