November 14 - Claude Stricker, director of International Academy for Sports Science and Technology (AISTS), has explained how his organisation are "taking levels of sports administration to new levels".
AISTS was founded in 2000 by the International Olympic Committee (IOC) in partnership with other local and university organisations, with the mission "to apply multi-disciplinary knowledge to the study of sports".
To do this they focus on the three pillars - of postgraduate education, continuing education and research - and do so primarily through their "Sports Administration and Technology" masters course.
Stricker, speaking after the Conference on Smart Textile Opportunities for Sport which AISTS organised on their campus here, explained the success they have had in this regard.
"We wanted to make sure that we had a programme where we train and educate sport managers - and to do that through our masters programme," he told insidethegames.
"Our main goal is about creating experts but while also raising levels of administrative excellence.
"To do this is it important to have awareness of many areas so we integrate knowledge from social science and medical perspectives on our course.
"To understand the starting time of the marathon, for example, you need to understand about acclimatisation, because if it is warm you will have problems in the middle of the day."
Another example of this, Stricker explained, is anti-doping where an understanding is required of aspects including both the legal process as well as medical ramifications.
Stricker explained how, while they are not consultants, AISTS have a "good relationship" with the IOC and "work with them on issues" which include fighting corruption and doping as well as encouraging sustainable development.
"What they want is solutions and concrete results but we apply the research that we've done on a path of knowledge transfer," he explained.
He added that, although he may have a "different style" from predecessor Jacques Rogge, the IOC will continue to tackle these ideas well under new President Thomas Bach who is "well-equipped" with "long experience in sport".
With wide experience over a variety of fields Stricker also appears someone well suited to his role at the head of the AISTS.
Stricker admitted that combining "a very rigid sport of Alpine skiing which is focused around being the fastest" with a "more technical sport of riding waves," is useful as you learn "broad aspects relevant to both sports."
He described the changes in skiing since his days as an athlete where "we've pushed so far that you reach the limit of the human body," while the optimisation of technique, as well as the greater opportunities to combine education with sport, were also highlighted.
Although it is only one of a number of things that they focus upon, Stricker described the importance of technology in sport which he describes "as the driver of evolution."
He added that they do not focus upon technology for the sake of it but because it "provides solutions for the complexity of sport, development, media" and is therefore an "important aspect."
AISTS attracts students across a wide variety of age groups, backgrounds and nationalities.
The class of 2013 consisted of 41 participants encompassing 25 nationalities, with an average age of 28 and seven years of work experience.
One example of an illustrious alumni is Australian Anne Gripper, best known for introducing the biological passport to cycling which has been hailed as one of the most important development in combating the doping culture over recent years.
Formerly an official with the Australian Sports Commission, Gripper took the masters course in 2006 before taking up a position at the head of the International Cycling Federation anti-doping department (UCI).
Another good example is Alexandros Giannakis of Greece who, after coming from a computer science background, took the masters course and is now the chief executive of a company, sense core, which plays a major role in the formula one industry.
Another strength of the course is that students come from all over the world, including from countries which have poor diplomatic relations such as Iran and Israel.
Among current students also are a number of Olympians including the German windsurfer Toni Wilhelm who finished in fourth position at London 2012.
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