International Intergovernmental Consultative Group on Anti-Doping in Sport

The movement to combat doping in sport has not been restricted to traditional sport-governing bodies. In 1999, the International Intergovernmental Consultative Group on Anti-Doping in Sport (IICGADS), was a product of a first ever assemblage known as the International Summit on Drugs in Sport, in November 1999. Australia, as the host country for the 2000 Sydney Summer Olympic Games, convened the meeting, which was attended by numerous international governmental and sport representatives. The purpose of the summit was to establish a public profile for the anti-doping movement in advance of the 2000 Olympics.

The IICGADS was formed as an interim, nonexclusive group, as it wished to operate as a sounding board for the views of all national interests with respect to anti-doping practices. In its beginnings in 1999, the IICGADS intended to work as an intermediary where required with the newly established World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA); it was the stated particular concern of the IICGADS at its 1999 summit that the organizational structure of WADA fully reflected the international sport community, and that all WADA initiatives reflected the principles of independence, accountability, and transparency.

In successive summits held annually from 2000 through 2003, the IICGADS expanded the membership of its group. It advocated worldwide government participation in WADA, coupled with an international harmonization of anti-doping regulation. By 2003, in the lead-up to the 2004 Athens Summer Olympics, the WADA Anti-Doping Code was adopted by most international sports bodies. Due in part to the lobbying efforts of the IICGADS, WADA has become the preeminent force in the enforcement of anti-doping in sport, as well as its best-known educational and public relations vehicle.

By 2003, the IICGADS had a membership of 103 countries. The organization formally requested that the United Nations Education, Science and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) formally commit to an international effort against doping in sport; the motto employed by the IICGADS in this political campaign was "doping threatens to kill sport as surely as it kills athletes." In 2005, UNESCO adopted an international convention against doping, intended to reinforce the efforts of WADA, as well as further promoting anti-doping policies in sport throughout the world.

SEE ALSO Doping tests; International Anti-Doping Agreement; World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA).