October 19 & 20, 2012
The 11th International Symposium for Olympic Research, hosted by the International Centre for Olympic Studies (ICOS) at The University of Western Ontario, will be held on October 19 & 20, 2012, at the Ivey-Spencer Leadership Centre in London, Ontario, Canada.
The Symposium will bring together scholars, researchers, students, and professionals interested in the socio-cultural study of the modern Olympic and Paralympic Games. Presentations and papers will cover a range of disciplines, including the areas of history, sociology, anthropology, philosophy, political science, and sport management.
Approved Abstract for International Symposium:
Gender policy and the impact on female athletes in modern day sport
Defining women’s gender and competitive performance through policy
Gender verification testing in sports is the issue of verifying the eligibility of women athletes competing in domestic, international and Olympic sporting events. The belief behind the testing: it was alleged male athletes may pose as a woman to take an unfair advantage in women’s sport. The first tests began at the European Athletic Championships in 1966, heightened by suspicion that some Eastern European female athletes were actually men. The International Olympic Committee [IOC] adopted and introduced testing in sex-segregated sport in 1968 at the Olympic Winter Games in Grenoble. In 2000 gender testing was abolished, due to heavy criticism from medical professionals specializing in genetics, endocrinology and psychology. All too often the athlete’s medical history has not remained confidential between the individual athlete and physician. Discriminatory practices and unsupported policy by inaccurate science as history has shown time-and-time again by the IOC, has led to severe trauma and dehumanizing of female athletes and their bodies, leaving them to bear the impact publicly on their own, which has only led to catastrophic and very tragic outcomes.
An overview of scientific developments, emboldened by legal theory and policy analysis, leads to important conclusions toward necessary amendments in IOC and sport federations’ policies and removal of gender verification testing of women altogether. Sport policy, which tries to maintain competitive balance as well as fair treatment of athletes, would benefit through a wave of deregulation for these athletes. IOC policy needs to encompass particular inclusion principles, education, science and safeguards that are missing from the current policy statements and universal system of ‘Best Practices’ to ensure respect, safety and participation, no matter one’s level of diversity, from sandbox to high performance.
KRISTEN WORLEY (Canada)
For Complete Conference Details – “CLICK HERE”
Published January 29th, 2012