IDEC discusses sports politics in Barcelona

The first and only seminar on politics within the area of sports took place in Barcelon a on 28 April at the main branch of IDEC-Universitat Pompeu Fabra. The discussion was attended by Pere Alcober for PSC; Maite Fandos, for CIU; Mª Àngels Esteller, for Partit Popular de Catalunya; Janet Sanz, for ICV-EUiA, and Ignasi Planas, representing the candidature of Unitat per Barcelona. The debate was chaired by Carles Murillo and Pere Solanellas, directors of the Master's in Sports Management at IDEC-UPF.

The various representatives explained the broad features of their policies within the world of sport. On the part of PSC, Pere Alcober emphasised the success of the sports model in Barcelona. According to Alcober, this model must be renewed to meet the challenges implied by the new legislature. The current chairman of the Institut Barcelona Esports pointed out that sport must be consolidated as a strategic element for international projection which has already turned Barcelona into one of the world's sports capitals.

Maite Fandos, for CiU, emphasised the importance of strengthening sport with platforms already in existence, such as the Barcelona School Sports Council. In this procedure, all agents, both public and private, should be involved in order to ensure sport is a sector which generates wealth. In this sense, Fandos explained that it is vital to provide support to clubs and entities to ensure a more professional management of resources.

For Mª Àngels Esteller, from PartitPopular de Catalunya, the main objective is the reinforcing of great sporting events and the strengthening of the brand of Barcelona. Esteller also pointed out the need to optimise the return on investment of said great events, not only in financial terms but also in the fostering of sport among the general public and the sports group fabric of Barcelona. For Partit Popular, it is also important to reassess the management of sports installations in the city and seek formulas guaranteeing a more efficient management of resources.

Janet Sanz, from ICV-EUiA, stressed that the overall balance in the area of sport of the outgoing legislature is positive. For ICV-EUiA, one key is to guarantee the equality of opportunities in access to sport for all residents of the districts of Barcelona and the least privileged groups. As regards large-scale events, ICV-EUiA will maintain its support providing the projects are sustainable and coherent with the nature of the city of Barcelona and its environment.

Ignasi Planas, representing the coalition Unitat per Barcelona, structured his speech around three basic axes within the world of sport: business, health and education. Planas emphasised the actions of the current municipal government within the business sphere in respect of large-scale sports events, but considered this objective should not affect the promoting of grass-roots sport. In this sense, support of the sports group fabric within this area is key to encouraging the practice of sports, and its vital role in health and education.

All these topics were discussed at the session organised by the Master's in Sports Management at IDEC-UPF, falling within the cycle “IDEC Lunches Discussing Sports”. The Master's in Sports Management reviews the functional aspects of the company and enters into the basic concepts of sports economy and law as well as sponsorship. The course also provides in-depth analysis of the management and running of sports companies, events organisation and the management of clubs and foundations.