IOF General Assemby: Junior World Orienteering Championships programme change proposal

There are six member federation proposals to the IOF General Assembly. One that most likely will cause interesting discussions at the GA is the proposal regarding the Junior World Orienteering Championships programme.

The background is the Norwegian Orienteering Federation’s (NOF) proposal about a change in the IOF competition rules for Foot Orienteering regarding the programme for the Junior World Orienteering Championships (JWOC). NOF proposes to add a Sprint Relay competition and remove the Middle Distance qualification race.

The IOF Council supports of the principle of including the Sprint Relay competition in JWOC but also tasked the IOF Foot Orienteering Commission (FOC) with performing an analysis and recommendation regarding the overall JWOC programme. Depending upon the analysis Council may put forward a counterproposal to be presented at the General Assembly.

The FOC analysis has been made in two steps; first as a request to the coaches at JWOC 2018, who didn’t present a clear view. In general, the coaches at JWOC 2018 wanted to retain the Middle Distance Qualification race, but were also sympathetic towards the idea of including a Sprint Relay competition. Therefore, FOC was tasked to do an in-depth evaluation.

The evaluation in the form of a survey has been sent to JWOC-coaches, Athletes Commission and Event Advisers. The clear majority of the respondents recommend continuing having all three forest finals in JWOC. Several respondents indicate, that the cost of extending the sequence of days from first to last competition from six to seven days is not significant compared to the total cost of participation. Several respondents find it important to keep the Middle Qualification race. Approximately the same number of respondents preferred to replace the Middle Qualification race with a Sprint Relay competition as is proposed by the Norwegian Orienteering Federation.

All the preferences of the respondents cannot be fulfilled at the same time, and hence the question is to decide which of these three preferences are of primary importance:

  • A Sprint Relay should be introduced
  • The Middle Qualification should be continued
  • Adding another day to the JWOC programme should be avoided

The IOF Council will discuss the analysis and recommendations at its meeting prior to the General Assembly and may present one or more counterproposals to the Norwegian proposal for GA decision.

A short summary of the other member federation proposals:

Gender equality IOF Vice Presidents
The Norwegian Orienteering Federation wants a change in the IOF Statutes regarding IOF Vice Presidents. With the additional phase; “There shall within the IOF Council at all times be a Vice President of each gender”, NOF wants to improve gender equality within the IOF Council.

Neutral General Assembly Chair person
The Norwegian Orienteering Federation also want a change in the IOF Statutes regarding election of the General Assembly Meeting Chair person. By changing “Election of a General Assembly presidium” to “Election of a General Assembly Meeting Chair person of non-Council members and non-delegates” NOF believes the General Assembly to be held on a more objective and democratic way.

Five anti-doping recommendations
The Danish Orienteering Federation suggests five so called milestones for the anti-doping work within the IOF; all member federations must sign an agreement with the IOF and with a domestic anti-doping agency, more top athletes on the IOF primary attention list, more athletes to report where-abouts, a clear policy towards member federations where their NADO does not comply with WADA codes and finally requirements regarding how member federations instruct their top athletes in doping related matters.

Strengthening the regional structures
The Danish Orienteering Federation also proposes the IOF to take a stronger responsibility for forming regions on each continent. DOF proposes the IOF to ensure that all sub-regional groups work with the same general statutes; meet regularly and at a minimum twice a year, the Chair person should rotate on a one-year basis etc.

A wider perspective of WOC VIP 
The Danish Orienteering Federation also suggests a wider VIP concept at the World Orienteering Championships, including a difference between VIP delegates and VIP guests. DOF proposes the concept to be named VIP concept and guidelines with a suggested extra goal: “Secure a standardized qualitative level for VIP services at all major IOF events”.

The General Assembly will be held on Saturday the 6th October.

On October 5th a number of IOF Conferences and Meetings will be held, among them:

  • 2nd IOF Global Development Conference (GDC) Invitation and Programme
  • 18th International Conference on Orienteering Mapping (ICOM) Invitation
  • a Pre-General Assembly meeting, 18:00-21:00

All you need to know about the IOF General Assembly (including the Member proposals) is found on the GA page on