LYON, France – With criminal groups looking to capitalize on increased border traffic and large crowds, violence and terrorism are just some of the risks associated with major sporting events.
To help address these risks, INTERPOL’s Project Stadia has launched its Knowledge Management System (SKMS) to support host countries in their safety and security preparations for major national and international public events.
Creating a global network of experts in the field of major event policing and security, SKMS provides real-time information on emerging incidents, events and emergencies.
It has two main components:
- a comprehensive knowledge repository of good practices in all aspects of major sporting event security, which all member countries can contribute to and benefit from; and
- an online collaborative platform where experts in the field can share, discuss, analyze and publish information on the evolving aspects of major sporting event security.
Developing international standards
Alongside the launch of the SKMS, preparing for evacuation challenges to safeguard international sporting events was the focus of a training course hosted at INTERPOL’s General Secretariat headquarters.
Senior police officials from 22 countries took part in the four-day (16 – 19 October) scenario-based Evacuation Challenges for Major International Sporting Events course. It was developed and co-organized by INTERPOL's Project Stadia and the National Center for Spectator Sports Safety and Security (NCS4).
NCS4 Director Lou Marciani said: “This course established with INTERPOL’s Project Stadia will allow senior police officials and incident management team leaders to prepare plans for evacuation and other protective actions for major international sporting events.”
This week’s session was the third of six modules leading to the International Sport Safety and Security Professional Certificate, as part of efforts to develop international standards on major event security.
“By involving academia in police training through our collaboration with NCS4, this accredited training course allows senior law enforcement officials from around the world to learn from their counterparts and develop the knowledge to safeguard major national and international sporting events,” said Falah Al Dosari, Project Stadia’s senior manager.
Established by INTERPOL in 2012 and funded by Qatar, Project Stadia is contributing to policing and security arrangements for the 2022 FIFA World Cup in Qatar.
“Every country which hosts a major sporting event wants it to be trouble-free and successful. Every event holds many valuable lessons not only for the host country, but for all those who will host major events in the future,” added Mr Al Dosari.
To capture good practices and lessons learned before, during and after major international sporting events, Project Stadia conducts observation and debriefing programmes with designated security officials from both the public sector and private sector who have direct responsibilities for policing and security operations.
It also organizes dedicated expert group meetings on cybersecurity, sports legislation and event safety & security to explore key themes relating to planning and executing safety and security arrangements for major events.