The Future of Sports Governing Bodies

18th Gijón Conference on Sports Economics   May 2024 saw the 18th edition of the international Gijón Conference on Sports Economics in Asturias, Northern Spain. Well-known sports economics scholars from different continents presented their newest research on the general topic of "Sports Governing Bodies" and the related challenges.  

Oliver Budzinski from the Economic Theory Group of Ilmenau University of Technology presented his new paper on "The Implications of the Recent Judgements of the European Court of Justice". In these judgements, the court ruled that several forms of conduct by sports governing bodies - especially blocking third-party competitions and disadvantaging clubs from smaller EU countries - are anticompetitive and violate European antitrust laws. Professor Budzinski extracted the economic rationale behind the judgements and identified demand for change in the way these sports governing bodies work as a market-internal regulator.

Tackling a related topic, Arne Feddersen (University of Southern Denmark, Campus Esbjerg) and Oliver Budzinski - in their conference opening presentation - explained their newest research on the empirical evidence about public interest spending by Sports Governing Bodies. In their empirical analysis, they do not find convincing public interest activities that would serve to justify anticompetitive rents and privileges.