Table 3

Substantiating quotes from interviews with Olympic stakeholders in Australia and South Africa to the theme of ‘knowledge generation and the custodians of knowledge’

IOC is not necessarily first port of call for knowledge
1I don't think that they go onto the IOC website and seek information there, because one of the things here in this country is that not everybody is aspiring to go to Olympic Games as the doctor…South African interviewee 5
2I mean, the fact that I don’t know that those were on the IOC website is an important point because if they're all there, it would be so easy for people, but people don't know. Yeah. I think also, I don't think enough people know that the IOC does research and plays that role in it. I don't think that they know that they have that scientific part to them. That’s important, yeah…South African
interviewee 4
3I think a lot of people probably don’t see the IOC as relevant in a day-to-day clinical practice. I don’t think clinical practitioners would see the IOC as being relevant to the day-to-day clinical practice. I think if you ask the average clinician in 25 words or less what do you think of the IOC, they'd be thinking about oh, putting on games, running that anti-doping, that’s about it…Australian
interviewee 6
4The other resource is the Australian Institute of Sport, which has lots of stuff on the site. So whenever, if I ever have to make statements about nutrition or cutting weight, or whatever, I tend to look to their website, because that’s been fairly well researched. That’s probably the main resources I use.Australian
interviewee 7
The role of the IOC in high-level or contentious issues
5Is there a role? Yes, I think there is. I think, especially the IOC, because if they're above sports and you're not going to get caught up in issues around soccer or issues around professional basketball or issues around professional football, AFL in that sense or rugby, then you know you’ve got that aspect of integrity to say look, we're taking a broader view and we're just thinking about athletes as athletes, men, women, transgender. We're just going to think about health and welfare of athletes. So, these are the issues that happen now.”Australian
interviewee 6
6I think the IOC Medical Commission should seek to be to lead world sport in defining…in providing some clarity and providing resources on issues which are topical for athlete health and integrity matters in sport. A lot of medical issues…I mean, pretty much all of these you could say have an integrity angle on them. Because they’re about the care of the athlete and so medical integrity is very important and I think if the IOC can’t lead, who else can?Australian
Interviewee 5
7Yeah, I don't know. It’s a funny one what they're trying to achieve with the statements? I mean mental health in elite athletes, that’s very relevant for going to an Olympics. Sex reassignment in sport’s becoming topical. It’s curious to me why they've picked non-contact ACL injury in the female athlete out of 20. I mean I get the broader policy, overall policy ones… But then they've gone really narrow in some other things. You would think that it’s more a broader thing somehow. For example, like with the transgender, that sort of consensus statement is probably one that the IOC needs to be a leader in that sort of thing, absolutely, because everyone else will take the lead. So that would be an example of one that. Whereas non-contact ACL injury, it’s a bit of a nuts-and-bolts thing. What the IOC says probably doesn't affect what I'm going to do…Australian
interviewee 1
Trusting the IOC brand
8I also think, you know, involved in a couple of sports there, that you - if you say that that’s IOC sort of best practice, it helps you introduce things in your own sport.Australian interviewee 4
9It’s seen as the pinnacle, and it’s seen as the best. The association then follows that if you've got people, if the IOC are happy to put their name to a panel of people, it would then follow that those panel of people would be well skilled and well educated in that particular topic just by association. I'd like to think genuinely they are, but even without delving into their background you sort of go, oh, well the IOC has put their name to this, they wouldn't just have anyone off the street contributing to it. Yeah, just again, because of the brand.Australian
interviewee 3
10I presumed that because it was an IOC Consensus Statement that it would be good quality, yeah.South African
interviewee 4
11I think it’s not as if Olympic sport should be held up there as a shining light because I think there’s a lot of practices around the politics and even the way Olympics is pursued in Australia. There is brand association with an IOC Consensus Statement, but I think there’s probably a certain sense that it may even lack a little bit of independence really. I don't know…there may be a certain message that the IOC wants to get out there and it may not be necessarily agreed with across the board.Australian
Interviewee 2
12As I said, I don’t agree with all things… I think that 2015 paper on diverse gender inclusion or whatever it’s called - I would say I’m not sure really that it aligns with the best science available. It seems to - that particular statement, I would say, looks like a political solution rather than a scientific solution to a complex problem.Australian
interviewee 5
Seeking diversity and inclusion of the athlete voice
13So firstly, you need to make sure that you've got diversity of skills and experience round the table because that’s going to inform how accessible they are…So, I think diversity is really important and also then in terms of setting, diversity of settings, so some of them again are not relevant in different countries or contexts. So, you might never be able to please everyone but there needs to be a recognition that this might not be relevant in this particular context, and you won't know that if you don't have somebody sitting around the table who comes from that specific context. Then there’s also just diversity of everything else, so gender, and race and geographic locations, all of that, because that all adds to what comes out in the consensus statements. I'll also say diversity of experience. So, what you tend to have in all of these is you have all of the professors that have been in the game for like 35 years and they're all sitting around the table reproducing these Consensus Statements but clinically…So one has to assume that the athlete is in some way involved in this process, whether it’s them who have identified the problem, or having a conversation with the athletes as you come up with these Consensus Statements as well. I'm not necessarily saying that they must be publishers or co-authors but that it’s relevant to the person who is the end user and ultimately the athlete is the end user.South African interviewee 1
14I'm a South African and probably our culture… the issue of traditional medicine, it’s big, it’s a challenge It’s a sensitive subject as well, it goes with belief and…how we react is important…So it should be addressed by Africans, because we are - and there’s so much secrecy about it as well.South African interviewee 2
  • IOC, International Olympic Committee.