In 2002, the International Olympic Committee Sport Department (IOC) commissioned CEO-UAB a research project on global sports participation in Olympic sports. Concretely, the research project aimed to analyse global participation within Summer and Winter Olympic sports disciplines, focusing on the number of practising or licensed players and the participation of national representatives in international competitions.
The International Olympic Federations (IFs) were identified as a main source for this data and so, formed the focus of the research. However, it was also considered necessary to include the IOC Recognised International Federations to provide a wider insight into global sports participation. A defined sample of National Olympic Committees (NOCs) was also contacted as institutions who should also have some of this information to corroborate participation data in certain countries.
Research was structured in six phases: 1) Identification of data and information sources; 2) Design of questionnaires; 3) Mailing; 4) Follow-up; 5) Database construction and management and 6) Analysis and report production.
Three primary areas of information and analysis from each sport discipline were identified:
National federation affiliation / participation
- NFs affiliated to the IF by discipline
- NFs affiliated to the IF by continent
- NFs affiliated participating at the qualifying events of the world championships and/or continental championships
- NFs affiliated organising a national championship
Individual licensed / participating athletes
- Number of licensed players or athletes by sport/discipline
- Number of licensed players or athletes by nation
- Number of licensed players or athletes by continent
- Estimated number of players who practise each sport by sport/discipline
- Estimated number of players who practise each sport by nation
- Estimated number of players who practise each sport by continent
International competitions (senior and youth level)
- World and continental championships by sport discipline
- World and continental championships by frequency of competitions
- World and continental championships by number of athletes
- World and continental championships by number NFs participating
- World and continental championships by continent