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Fifa World Cup

Qatari soft power efforts: two steps forward, one step backwards

James Dorsey | Posted 11.18.2016 | Sports
James Dorsey

By James M. Dorsey Efforts to leverage Qatar's 2022 World Cup hosting rights to create the soft power the Gulf state needs to punch above its weight ...

Qatar calls into question its sincerity in pushing World Cup-driven reform

James Dorsey | Posted 11.10.2016 | World
James Dorsey

By James M. Dorsey For much of the last six years since winning the hosting rights of the 2022 World Cup, Qatar appeared to be taking a slow and tort...

A study in soft power strategy: Iceland 1, Qatar -1

James Dorsey | Posted 10.10.2016 | Sports
James Dorsey

By James M Dorsey The soccer soft power contrast between Qatar and Iceland speaks volumes. A comparison of the strategies of both countries demonstra...

Three Cheers For Rio, Thumbs Down For The IOC

Saad Khan | Posted 08.04.2016 | Sports
Saad Khan

The 2016 Olympics host Rio de Janeiro is finally basking in some glory. It had to overcome many obstacles and the ridicule of the West; and the games ...

US adds to pressure on Qatar to move on labour reform

James Dorsey | Posted 07.07.2016 | Sports
James Dorsey

By James M. Dorsey A recently published US State Department report on human trafficking provides Qatar with yet another roadmap to counter World Cup-...

FIFA, Human Rights and Politics: One Step Forward, Two Steps Backwards

James Dorsey | Posted 04.23.2016 | Sports
James Dorsey

World soccer body FIFA's creation of a watchdog to monitor the living and working conditions of migrant labour employed on World Cup 2022-related construction sites constitutes the second time in a month that Qatar has been warned that it needs to demonstrate sincerity in its reform of the Gulf state's controversial labour system.

Why FIFA's New President Must Act Now to Prevent a World Cup Built on Abuse

Salil Shetty | Posted 04.19.2016 | World
Salil Shetty

Qatari authorities and FIFA, world football's governing body, were quick to dismiss our findings when we published them last month. But when FIFA's new President Gianni Infantino visits Qatar this week, he must confront the issue head on.

Subtle Policy Changes Could Reinforce Qatari Focus On Sports

James Dorsey | Posted 01.29.2016 | Sports
James Dorsey

They argue that Sheikh Tamim, who took office after his father, Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa Al Thani, stepped down in 2013, has begun with the reshuffle to move the old guard aside and pave the road for change.

Trade Unions Test Qatari Sincerity With Demands for Labor Reform

James Dorsey | Posted 12.20.2015 | Sports
James Dorsey

International trade unions have stepped up pressure on Qatar with a series of demands, a majority of which the Gulf state could implement without having to reform its autocracy or threaten the privileged position of its citizenry who account for a mere 12 percent of the population and fear that change could cost them control of their culture and society.

FIFA's human rights litmus test: Will it clean house?

James Dorsey | Posted 12.15.2015 | Sports
James Dorsey

Ridden by the worst corruption scandal in its history, world soccer body FIFA is breaking new ground by seeking to put United Nations guidelines for human rights at the centre of its activities.

Qatari Labour Reforms: Words but no Actions

James Dorsey | Posted 11.30.2016 | World
James Dorsey

Words but no actions. That is Amnesty International's evaluation of promised Qatari labour reforms on the fifth year of the awarding of the 2022 World Cup hosting rights to the Gulf state.

Saudi vs.Team Timor: Space Jam Soccer Edition

Atif Choudhury | Posted 11.18.2016 | Sports
Atif Choudhury

For the last two months, I have had the life-changing opportunity to live and work in the beautiful nation of Timor-Leste. This has been especially exciting as an avid soccer fan.

Embattled World Cup Host Qatar Sends Mixed Messages

James Dorsey | Posted 11.10.2016 | Sports
James Dorsey

Embattled World Cup host Qatar is sending contradictory messages as it struggles with demands to improve migrant labour conditions and mounting questions about the integrity of its successful FIFA bid, confronts the fall-out of dropping energy prices, and seeks to project itself as both a key Western ally and a useful conduit to more militant Islamist forces.

OECD Holds FIFA Responsible for Qatari World Cup-related Labour Conditions

James Dorsey | Posted 10.18.2016 | Sports
James Dorsey

A Swiss government-sponsored unit of the Paris-based OECD has defined world soccer body FIFA as a multi-national bound by the group's guidelines. As a result, the group concluded that FIFA is responsible for the upholding of the human and labour rights of workers employed in Qatar on 2022 World Cup-related projects.

Religious Support for Qatari Labor Reforms Puts Gulf States on the Spot

James Dorsey | Posted 09.14.2016 | World
James Dorsey

By justifying the call on theological grounds and drawing on a parable of Omar Ibn al-Khattab, one of the 7th century's first four successors of the Prophet Mohammed, widely viewed by even the most conservative or militant Muslims as the righteous caliphs, Sheikh Ali Al Qaradaghi made it more difficult for Qatar and other Gulf states to justify evading radical labor reforms.

America's Wonder Women & The Battle For Equal Green(s)

Olivia Roskill | Posted 08.14.2016 | Teen
Olivia Roskill

Turf isn't the only greens where women athletes are losing out. FIFA must recognize that they've been presented with an enormous opportunity to follow their mission statement and "develop football everywhere and for all." And yes, the word "all" includes women.

Mega Events: Qatar Is Too Hot, Beijing Has No Snow

James Dorsey | Posted 07.31.2016 | Sports
James Dorsey

2022 is promising to be the year of mega sporting events that potentially fly in the face of values professed by international sporting events and defy logic.

Fan opposition to Qatar goes viral

James Dorsey | Posted 07.14.2016 | Sports
James Dorsey

World Cup host Qatar is discovering the reputational risk involved in hosting high-profile mega sporting events. Qatar Airways' sponsorship of FC Barcelona is producing exactly the kind of publicity that is a corporate sponsor's worst nightmare while a Swiss investigation of the Qatari World Cup bid threatens to expose questionable financial dealings that will fuel demands for withdrawing the tournament from the Gulf state.

An Adventure to the Women's World Cup -- An Odyssey Worth the Effort

Ginny Gilder | Posted 07.09.2016 | Sports
Ginny Gilder

My wife, my daughter and I are all grateful we were there to witness history in the making. Nowhere else we'd have rather been, with thanks to the universe for getting us there in the nick of time.

Women's World Cup: If heroes don't get paid equally, who will?

Jennifer Danielle Crumpton | Posted 07.06.2016 | Religion
Jennifer Danielle Crumpton

Yesterday's dominating FIFA Women's World Cup victory by the U.S. Women's National Team over Japan (5-2) set a television record: It was the most-watched soccer match ever in the U.S. on a single network.

Sunday Night's Game Was The Most Watched Soccer Match In U.S. History

The Huffington Post | Justin Block | Posted 07.07.2015 | Sports

For women or men.

FIFA's Blatter Unwittingly Pinpoints Soccer Governance's Prime Issues

James Dorsey | Posted 07.05.2016 | World
James Dorsey

Embattled FIFA president Sepp Blatter unwittingly put his finger on two fundamental issues that underlie a corruption scandal that has rocked world soccer governance, the worst crisis in the sport's history.

FIFA's (Other) Big Problem

Juliana Barbassa | Posted 07.02.2016 | Latino Voices
Juliana Barbassa

FIFA's culture of discrimination goes far beyond the musings of a gaffe-prone, out-of-touch leader.

Landon Donovan Is Clearly Still Salty About Missing The World Cup

The Huffington Post | Lucy McCalmont | Posted 07.01.2015 | Sports

Ouch.

Advisory Council Rejects Labour Reform as Qatar Stiffens Its Back

James Dorsey | Posted 06.24.2016 | Sports
James Dorsey

Qatar's hardening stance threatens to roll back its successful effort since winning the right to host the World Cup four years to convince its critics that it was serious about reform of its notorious kafala or sponsorship system that puts employees at the mercy of their employers.