Analysis of FIA governance highlights major improvements needed

Posted by Rowland Jack on 30 November 2013

Independent analysis of governance within the Fédération Internationale de l’Automobile (FIA), the world governing body for motor sport, has identified areas for major improvement, particularly in financial reporting, ahead of the FIA’s General Assembly this week.

The analysis, conducted by I Trust Sport Ltd, a company dedicated to improving governance in international sport, used an assessment tool developed by academics at IDHEAP, the Swiss Graduate School of Public Administration in Lausanne.

Key findings included:

  • The FIA’s financial accounts are not published
  • The remuneration of elected officials and senior staff is not published
  • There is a lack of independent, non-executive members in the FIA Senate and World Councils

In some other areas FIA governance is strong, for example:

  • The International Tribunal and International Court of Appeal provide a more comprehensive system for dealing with disciplinary matters than most other sports
  • The FIA, in partnership with the FIA Foundation, invests extensively in its non-profit objectives regarding motor sport training and road safety
  • The FIA has recently adopted a new Ethics Code

Rowland Jack, Founder of I Trust Sport said:

“The FIA administers a popular and highly complex sport. Analysis of FIA governance shows that they do many things well – such as investing in motor racing training and road safety - but there is a lack of transparency in financial reporting in particular. At a time of intense external scrutiny, some straightforward reforms could make a big difference to FIA governance.”

David Ward, who commissioned the study said:

“This survey gives the FIA membership an independent audit of the Federation’s governance highlighting both what it does well and not so well. It shows clearly the changes needed to ensure that the FIA’s governance can become truly world class. I hope it will serve as a catalyst for further reform.”

David Ward recently stood in the FIA 2013 Presidential Election but did not succeed in obtaining sufficient nominations for his candidacy to be confirmed. He has worked for the last 20 years in various capacities with the FIA, most recently as the Director General of the FIA Foundation (2001-2013).

A summary of the analysis is available to download here [PDF 880 KB].

For more information about the governance assessment tool see here.

Analysis of FIA governance highlights major improvements needed

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