CCES Blog: Making Sport Better

Welcome to the CCES blog. We’ll be using this platform to share our views on anything and everything related to ethics in sport – from playground to podium. The CCES uses ethical debate to create an environment for meaningful dialogue around the future of sport. We strive to shape the public consensus of how we should behave when we compete, always recognizing that in a democracy, consensus is dynamic. 

The primary contributors to this blog are the members of the CCES executive team (listed below), with occasional entries from other CCES staff:

Paul Melia, President and Chief Executive Officer
Karri Dawson, Executive Director, Values-Based Sport
Jeremy Luke, Executive Director, Sport Integrity

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Fitting the pieces together (part 3)

February 27, 2013A group of soccer players pose for a team photo

In yesterday’s blog post, I made an analogy of the Canadian sport system being similar to a four-legged stool, with each leg representing an important section (participation, high-performance excellence, preparation of competent coaches, and physical literacy). But what about the values in sport? Read more

Fitting the pieces together (part 2)

February 26, 2013Soccer coach goes over the game plan

Yesterday, I posed the question: “If the Canadian Sport Policy 2012 is the over-arching blueprint for the Canadian sport system, how do all the pieces fit together?” Today, let me suggest a rather simple analogy in an attempt to do just that – fit the pieces together. Think of Canadian sport as a...Read more

Fitting the pieces together (part 1)

February 25, 2013Stick Figure Graphics of Sports

Fitting all the pieces of the Canadian sport system together is not an easy task. It is unlike any other. It is neither school-based (think US sport system) nor club-based (think European sport system). Our system combines elements of both, but at the community level, our system is largely...Read more

Lessons from Lance

January 23, 2013Water colour painting of a bicycle race

What, if anything, can we learn from Lance Armstrong’s confession to Oprah Winfrey last week? When it comes to doping in the sport of cycling, the answer is: nothing we didn’t already know. But, are there any lessons we can take from Lance’s public admission to Oprah that he did indeed dope all...Read more

2012: What a year in sports!

December 20, 2012Hockey Players Shake Hands

I noticed the top three stories in sport this past year, as determined by a poll in North America, were: the Penn State Sandusky Scandal, the Lance Armstrong Scandal, and the NFL Bounty Scandal. In order: child molestation, doping, and violence in sports were the top stories. I wonder if we have a...Read more

Brain Injuries – the hidden damage

December 4, 2012A bodycheck along the boards

Twenty years from now, probably less, we will look back on brain injuries in sport and wonder how we could have allowed this kind of harm come to our kids. Today though, we are content to refer to brain injuries as “getting your bell rung” or “seeing stars” or some other euphemism which...Read more

Doing the wrong thing for the right reasons?

September 28, 2012Marathon runners close in on the finish line.

Recently, the United States Anti-Doping Agency (USADA) asserted a number of anti-doping rule violations against Lance Armstrong and proposed the appropriate sanctions for these violations as provided for under the World Anti-Doping Code. Mr. Armstrong had the right to contest these assertions...Read more

When something important is not valued, everyone loses

September 20, 2012Basketball Players Relax on the Bench

Imagine if there was something in our communities that reduced teen suicide, reduced teen pregnancy, reduced drug use, reduced obesity, and reduced youth gang and crime involvement. Imagine if that same thing also increased self-esteem, improved academic performance, improved physical and mental...Read more

When good comes from bad

September 19, 2012Softball game at dusk

In today’s world of 24/7 sports radio, television and the internet, most kids are exposed to “all sports, all the time.” Given the media’s preference to sensationalize the darker side of sport rather than to highlight the sensational, young sports enthusiasts are fed a steady diet of athletes...Read more

Fair and Phenomenal

August 5, 2012Athletic Track

True Sport moments are not simply about examples of fair play or sportsmanship, although they are often evident in True Sport. True Sport moments are about when sport is firing on all cylinders – when the Principles of True Sport (www....Read more

Can you lose and still be a champion?

July 31, 2012Close up of hands shaking in agreement

Can you lose and still be a champion?

Canadian tennis star Milos Raonic just proved you can. After an epic four hour plus tennis match at the London Games, which ended 6-3, 3-6, 25-23 in favour of Raonic’s opponent Jo-Wilfred Tsonga of France, the two combatants embraced...Read more

Running under the Olympic flag

July 30, 2012A lone runner on the boardwalk

“Guor Marial ran for his life to escape a Sudanese child labour camp. Now he will get to run at the Olympics.” (Read the full story at: more

Empty seats in London

July 29, 2012Sparse fans in the stadium

“Early indications are that the empty seats are in accredited seating areas...” so says the London Organizing Committee spokesperson in response to reports that many rows of seats at Olympic venues are sitting empty.

True Sport has seven principles which, when all are included in sport in...Read more

London Blog

July 27, 2012London bridge at night

The Olympic and Paralympic Games are about to begin and so are my London blog posts. These posts will highlight True Sport moments at the Games.

But first, here’s a quick primer on True Sport. True Sport is the seven principles that Canadians have told us they want sport...Read more

How much is too much?

July 24, 2012Various lab beakers and test tubes

With the London Olympic/Paralympic Games about to begin, some people are questioning the amount of money being spent on anti-doping efforts at the Games. Fair question, particularly as the world economy sputters along and public authorities around the world underwrite the lion’s share of anti-...Read more

Sport is never neutral

July 4, 2012Young hockey player practices on an outdoor rink

Late last week I wrote about the BC Minor Hockey coach and the alleged tripping incident in a spring hockey league tournament the previous weekend. If ever there were an incident that illustrates how bad sport does not...Read more

Good sport doesn’t happen by accident, and neither does bad sport

June 29, 2012Flaming Puck

Let’s look at the British Columbia Minor Hockey coach and the alleged tripping incident in a spring hockey league tournament this past weekend. If ever there were an incident that illustrates how bad sport does not happen by accident this is the poster child case study.Read more

Winning isn't everything.

May 2, 2012Basketball team huddles around the coach for instructions

Contrary to the opening observation in John Allemang’s Saturday article in this past weekend’s Globe and Mail, entitled “The Case for Killing the Competition,” I don’t think Canada’s push to own the podium in Vancouver was actually about winning being everything and by extension, the...Read more

The "Good" Penalty

April 24, 2012Hockey stick and puck

Did anyone see the puck the other night in Game 4 between Nashville and Detroit? No? Nor did the referees apparently.

Sometimes in sport, we hear people say that she or he took a “good” penalty. Classic examples of this are the trip on a breakaway in hockey, the intentional foul toward...Read more

A great loss

April 17, 2012A stack of newspapers. Some reading glasses.

I was shocked and filled with a deep sense of loss when I heard the news this morning that Randy Starkman had died. 

Yesterday, Canadian sport lost a true friend and supporter with the sad and sudden death of renowned journalist Randy Starkman. I had the opportunity and privilege to...Read more