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Sport for Development and Peace

Enhancing the Contribution of Sport to Sustainable Development

The Commonwealth Secretariat supports member countries to develop policies and strategies to maximise the contribution of sport to national development objectives and the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

This work focuses on the intentional use of sport as a tool in advancing sustainable development and strengthening governance, gender equality and the protection and promotion of human rights.

The Commonwealth is recognised as a global leader in this sector and plays a key coordination role with international intergovernmental organisations and the Commonwealth sports movement, as well as business, academia, non-government groups and civil society.

There are three main areas of focus for sport for development and peace in the Commonwealth:

  1. Sport’s impact on the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)
  2. Developing national policies and strategies
  3. Building capacity of leaders and officials

More information on the sport for development and peace work can be found in the booklet, Enhancing the Contribution of Sport to Sustainable Development.

“In the Commonwealth, we are harnessing the role of sport as a development tool, supported by strengthened governance, sport integrity and the protection of human rights in sport, towards more inclusive and sustainable development.”
The Rt Hon Patricia Scotland QC, Secretary-General of the Commonwealth

Technical assistance

The Commonwealth Secretariat advocates for sport to be used as a vehicle for peace and development. We assist member countries to develop policies and frameworks that link sport to outcomes in areas such as health, education, gender equality and social cohesion. Technical assistance is available to member countries to develop national policies and strategies to maximise the contribution of sport to national development objectives.

For more information on sport's role in national development, click here

Latest news
Ask the Expert: Transforming lives through sport development

Oliver Dudfield, Head of Sport for Development and Peace, shares how the Secretariat’s focus on maximising the positive impact of sport at the national and Pan-Commonwealth level. MORE

Global agencies join up to measure sports’ contribution to the SDGs

Experts from leading intergovernmental, civil society and sport organisations have agreed to work with the Commonwealth Secretariat to develop practical solutions. MORE

CHOGM lookback: Commonwealth institutions renew commitment to tackling human rights

The ‘London Declaration’ on sport and human rights was adopted at the biennial meeting of the Commonwealth Forum of National Human Rights Institutions. MORE

Ministership call for ways to recognise the value of sport

Ministers say the measurement and evaluation of the contribution of sport and making it mainstream to national development and the SDG's need to be strengthened. MORE

Advisory Body sets out steps to quantify the role of sport in advancing sustainable development

Improving government data collection and protecting human rights will help maximise the role that sport can play in sustainable development. MORE

Blog: The Kazan Action Plan is set to overhaul sports policy

To maximise the impact of sport at community level, new tactics are needed that mainstream sports policy into national development plans. MORE

Publications and resources

The Commonwealth Secretariat undertakes wide ranging consultation and analysis to produce discussion papers, guidelines and toolkits for member governments and other stakeholders to assist in strengthening SDP policy and strategy.

Enhancing the Contribution of Sport to Sustainable Development

Enhancing the Contribution of Sport to the Sustainable Development Goals

Sport for Development and Peace and the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development

The Commonwealth Guide to Advancing Development through Sport

Strengthening Sport for Development and Peace National Policies and Strategies

Sport for Development and Peace Youth Advocacy Toolkit

Policy Guidance to Commonwealth Governments on Protecting the Integrity of Sport

Strengthening Sport-Related Policy Coherence

States’ Obligations Under International Human Rights Conventions

Commonwealth Sports Ministers Meetings

Commonwealth Sports Ministers meet every two years in the margins of the Commonwealth or Olympic Games. At these meetings Ministers consider key sport policy issues and work to advance Commonwealth cooperation on linking sport and development, and building peaceful and cohesive communities.

Find out more about Commonwealth Sports Ministers Meeting

Commonwealth Advisory Body on Sport

The Commonwealth Advisory Body on Sport (CABOS) is an independent body providing advice on sport policy issues, particularly as it relates to Sport for Development and Peace (SDP), and protecting the integrity of sport. CABOS reports to the Commonwealth Secretary-General, Commonwealth Sports Ministers Meetings and, through the Commonwealth Secretariat, to member governments and key stakeholders.

Find out more about CABOS

Youth SDP working group

Established in May 2013, the Commonwealth Youth Sport for Development and Peace (CYSDP) working group is composed of 10 youth practitioners working in the field of sport for development and peace. Learn more about the CYSDP