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International requirements

ASADA's work was carried out in a global anti-doping ecosystem.

The Copenhagen Declaration on Anti-Doping in Sport was agreed to by governments at the Second World Conference on Doping in Sport held in Copenhagen, Denmark, in March 2003. The Copenhagen Declaration was the political document through which governments, including Australia, signalled their intention to formally recognise and implement the World Anti-Doping Code. This initiative was the first step taken by governments towards the UNESCO International Convention against Doping in Sport 2005 (the UNESCO Convention).

The UNESCO Convention requires member countries to harmonise their laws on doping in sport and gives governments a practical tool for aligning their domestic legislation and policies with the World Anti-Doping Code. As a State Party to the UNESCO Convention, Australia implements anti-doping arrangements consistent with the principles of the World Anti-Doping Code. The Australian Government ratified the convention on 17 January 2006.

Multilateral arrangements


Type of arrangement

What it does

UNESCO Convention (2005)

An international instrument, the State Parties (countries that have ratified, accepted, approved or acceded to it) to which are legally bound by its provisions.

As at 30 June 2020 there were 189 State Parties to the convention.

As the only United Nations agency with a sport mandate, UNESCO leads a comprehensive global anti-doping framework harmonising anti-doping rules and policies worldwide in support of the World Anti‑Doping Code.

Convention signatories meet every 2 years. This conference provides an opportunity for discussion and debate on public policies in the fight against doping. The conference also determines the allocation of UNESCO funding to signatories recognised as requiring assistance to develop and implement effective anti‑doping programs.

International Anti-Doping Arrangement (IADA) (1991)

A cooperative intergovernmental alliance between 10 nations including Australia.

IADA meets each year to share experiences and gain a global perspective on international anti‑doping practices. This helps enhance expertise and knowledge throughout the alliance as its members work towards a best practice anti-doping control framework.

Council of Europe Anti-Doping Convention (1989)

An international instrument open to both member states and non‑member states of the Council of Europe.

To date, it has been ratified by 52 states including Australia.

The Council of Europe Convention sets a certain number of common standards and regulations requiring parties to adopt legislative, financial, technical, educational and other measures. Its main objective is to promote national and international harmonisation of measures against doping.

Global policies and practices

There are 3 elements encouraging optimal harmonisation and best practice in international and national anti-doping programs:

World Anti-Doping Code

The World Anti-Doping Code is the core document setting the framework for harmonised anti-doping policies, rules and regulations among sporting organisations and public authorities. There are 10 anti-doping violations in the World Anti-Doping Code:

  1. Presence of a prohibited substance or its metabolites or markers in an athlete’s sample (otherwise known as a positive doping test)
  2. Use or attempted use by an athlete of a prohibited substance or a prohibited method
  3. Evading, refusing or failing to submit to sample collection
  4. Whereabouts failures
  5. Tampering or attempted tampering with any part of doping control
  6. Possession of a prohibited substance or a prohibited method
  7. Trafficking or attempted trafficking in any prohibited substance or prohibited method
  8. Administration or attempted administration to any athlete in-competition of any prohibited substance or prohibited method, or administration or attempted administration to any athlete out-of-competition of any prohibited substance or any prohibited method that is prohibited out-of-competition
  9. Complicity in a doping violation
  10. Association with a prohibited person.

International Standards

There are 6 International Standards for anti-doping:

  1. Prohibited list
  2. Testing and investigations
  3. Laboratories
  4. Therapeutic use exemptions
  5. Protection of privacy and personal information
  6. Code compliance by signatories.

They are aimed at harmonising the practices of organisations responsible for specific technical and operational parts of anti-doping programs. Adherence to the International Standards is mandatory for compliance with the World Anti-Doping Code.

Model rules, guidelines and protocols

WADA has developed model rules for national Olympic committees, international federations, major event organisations and national anti-doping organisations to assist these organisations in drafting anti-doping rules in line with the World Anti-Doping Code.