The International Olympic Committee’s (IOC) Executive Board has proposed a new strategic roadmap, Agenda 2020+5, which will be put to the upcoming IOC session in March.
The roadmap includes 15 new recommendations to be implemented over the course of the next five years to guide the IOC through the effects of the coronavirus pandemic, including the postponed Tokyo 2020 Summer Games.
The proposal is based on key trends identified by the IOC Executive Board as issues affecting the sport, including greater solidarity within and among societies, the growth in digitalisation, the need to achieve sustainable development, the growing demand for credibility, and the need to build resilience in the face of the economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic.
The ‘harmonisation of the sports calendar’ is listed in the proposal as a key recommendation, with the Olympic calendar congested due to the rescheduling of the Tokyo Games and the uncertainty surrounding whether the event would go ahead this year.
The Executive Board also reinforced the IOC’s environmental responsibilities, encouraging the governing body to strengthen the role of sport as an important enabler for the UN Sustainable Development Goals.
IOC President, Thomas Bach, stated: “When we adopted Olympic Agenda 2020 in 2014, we did so under the adage of ‘change or be changed’. This still holds true today. The world around us has continued to evolve. Nothing illustrates this better than the ongoing global COVID-19 pandemic and its consequences for society.
“As challenging as the circumstances may appear right now, if we draw the right conclusions, we can turn these into opportunities. To do so, we must address this future environment without delay.
“We need to carry forward Olympic Agenda 2020. This is why we have developed Olympic Agenda 2020+5 and its recommendations with the IOC Executive Board and based on the feedback we received from stakeholders following the Olympism and Corona messages.”
The Executive Board has also advised that the IOC and Olympic movement should work towards strengthening ‘the uniqueness and the universality of the Olympic Games’.
There is passing reference to the ongoing debate surrounding Rule 50 and athletes’ right to protest at the Olympic Games, with the Executive Board reaffirming that the IOC should ‘reinforce athletes’ rights and responsibilities’.
The new Agenda 2020+5 map builds on the IOC’s Agenda 2020 programme, which was unveiled in December 2014. Last year, the Olympic movement divulged that 85% of recommendations set forward by the initiative have been achieved and the roadmap has had a ‘profound effect’ on the organisations.
The 137th IOC session will be held virtually, as a result of the COVID-19 crisis, later in March.