WBSC publishes first Integrity Unit annual report

WBSC publishes first Integrity Unit annual report
"The WBSC will continuously address best efforts to make our sport stronger, better and more accountable," commented WBSC President Riccardo Fraccari.

The World Baseball Softball Confederation (WBSC) has published the first edition of its annual Integrity Unit Report.

"The report covers every key principle of integrity - anti-doping, governance, prevention of manipulation of competition, safeguarding, sustainability - as well as others, to keep members updated regarding all the WBSC integrity matters," commented WBSC President Riccardo Fraccari. "The WBSC will continuously address best efforts to make our sport stronger, better and more accountable."

Integrity Unit Annual Report 2022

While keeping anti-doping a key priority, the WBSC Integrity Unit investigated how other sports communities and governments responded to non-doping threats, such as competition manipulation, illegal betting, harassment and abuse, corruption, poor governance and poor sustainability. The annual report. which has seven chapters and includes the Anti-Doping and Governance reports, is an Integrity Unit response tailored to the baseball/softball community's needs.

The WBSC monitored events during the 2022 international season such as the U-18 Baseball World Cup, the U-23 Baseball World Cup and the Men's Softball World Cup using Sportradar's Universal Fraud Detection System.

From the beginning of September 2021, the WBSC Integrity Unit registered two WBSC Athletes’ Commission members and its liaison to the IOC’s certification programme for Safeguarding in Sport. After 200 hours of study and exams, all three received final certification in September 2022. In the 2023 season, the WBSC will offer online and offline educational workshops for each team, officials, and staff involved at WBSC events.

The report also contains a mention of the harassment and abuse cases reported through WBSC official channels.

"While keeping in mind the confidentiality of some cases, this approach would ensure that the WBSC will increasingly be more transparent and clearer with its processes, especially when making decisions," added President Fraccari. "We hope this could be a good example for our members to implement a similar structure soon."

In 2022, the WBSC released its Sustainability Strategy, aligned with the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Green Future Project (GFP) and Pilio are partnering with the WBSC to implement the strategy. The WBSC, through a partnership with Leverade, the WBSC’s NFT and Trophies Awards Partner, has embraced digital trophies, recognising them as a sustainable alternative to physical medals.

Following a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with VIRTUS, the WBSC Paralympic Commission listed among their objectives of the Strategic Plan 2022-2028, the creation of a Baseball5 version for athletes with an intellectual impairment.

The WBSC established its Integrity Unit in 2020. It is aligned with the Olympic Agenda 2020+5, the IOC’s Basic Universal Principles of Good Governance (BUPGG) and ASOIF Governance Task Force (GTF) Recommendations.