The advantage of setting up a system with measurement tools for improving governance in sports organisations is somewhat obvious, allowing an organisation to represent its governance visually and therefore to see the failures and to correct them each year in order to fit in a virtuous learning process. Once these “qualities” demonstrated, the IF could continue to express them using an independent label (annual certification).[1] It may also be recommended to these FI to create an internal commission to monitor the evolution of their governance and constantly seek to improve it.

To illustrate these shortcomings, such as at the level of harmonisation (Level 4 for Pérez), we can discuss the case of Lance Armstrong (seven-time winner of the Tour de France) related to doping to demonstrate that the rules of the world of sport, the laws and international agreements do not go far enough (AFLD, WADA, UCI rules, etc..). For example, France has all the elements to prove a doping case, yet France does not act! Nevertheless, in the United States, Lance Armstrong will probably not escape. For the record, we recall the case of Marion Jones who went to prison and paid for her “crimes”, so Armstrong could also serve a prison sentence, let alone the debts to pay. The harmonisation of sanctions related to doping brings a new justification for the creation of an independent body for the control of governance in the world of sport.

However it is clear, that the organisations studied are also and sometimes essentially political configurations and even political arenas focused on power struggles according to Mintzberg or a behaviorist perspective (Cyert and March, 1963) i.e. the preservation of power by the president and the managers in office appear to be the driving force behind the dynamics of governance and management.

The control of the Board of Directors of the IOC and of IFs is not very frequent yet it is professional. The question of whether the purpose and strategy are properly served by the leadership and management is not really addressed. In this type of organisation governance must be beyond reproach, whether it be between the Board and the salaried senior managers employees but also between national and / or continental organizations and the IF and finally between the organisation and its stakeholders, likewise for the IOC and the NOCs.

Another item of discussion with the literature concerns the other forms of rationality present in terms of governance and power. The three spheres of legitimacy on which the legitimacy of the governance project of these organizations is based are mostly related to sport (in connection with the purpose and mission of the organisation), financial and societal. The financial responsibility for such NGOs is theoretically to ensure the optimisation of its administration and reduce the operating costs to direct the maximum of its resources toward its social objective. These elements are difficult to measure and to control. Therefore, the establishment of governance, i.e. the process by which practices become taken for granted according to neo-institutionalists like Berger and Luckmann (1996) is achieved with forms of rationality which seem to be profoundly changing just like multinationals do. Rationalities seem to go from a redistributive internal rationality based on a financial logic (i.e. to organize profitable competitions contributing to the image of the FI while organising a financial redistribution on the most disadvantaged areas) to a more global societal rationality based on citizens and society (“do good” using sport by disseminating the values ​​of sport and Olympism for the benefit of society) in order to regain a challenged legitimacy. This trend seems mimetic within the broader Social Responsibility of Companies. It is done with the business world and often at the request of sponsors but also of the IOC. It contaminates the sports and the International Olympic field even beyond the world of NGOs. This development is not new for the Olympic world and the world of sport because it is in its genes and part of its original project and utopia to contribute to a better functioning of society through sports, peace and education. Therefore, it is rather a new strategic and managerial approach (especially in terms of communication) that tries to restore the civic and societal rationality. That is the reason why levels 4 and 5 of governance are becoming more and more important to facilitate the implementation of these new challenges and help restore the legitimacy of NGOs in such organisations.

But unlike the business world, there is a legal vacuum in the field. No official authority currently exists in the world of associations / or of sports. The gigantism of the sport system and the involvement of some totalitarian countries or (in the South) in national sporting systems, the control of sport by some mafia organisations justify the governance controls of the world of sport. To meet this objective, the creation of a “World Sport Governance Agency” (WSGA) is an interesting perspective (Arcioni 2010). It would be a non-governmental organisation defending the Olympic Charter, the principles of good governance and ethics within the Olympic system and the world of professional as well as amateur sport.

The proposal of such an agency could surpass the sporting world and be applied to all international non-profit organisations. This agency could become a model for the control of the governance of NGOs. On the same model, the world of NGOs could create such an agency and include a measurement tool for the standard corporate governance of large NGOs adapting some indicators according to their purpose (humanitarian, charitable, environmental organisations etc.).

[1] To be defined later.