Nuria Puig


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The OSC is today one of the world’s leading centres of written information on the Olympic Movement and the Olympic Games. Its main mission is to collect, enrich and disseminate Olympic knowledge and guarantee accessibility to the IOC collections. In order to do so, the Centre focuses its activities on the following objectives:


  1. Guarantee access to the IOC’s written patrimony and Olympic reference information.
  2. Disseminate, provide, coordinate and stimulate research and the creation of Olympic reference content.
  3. Be the preferred point of contact for the academic community and Olympic Movement members requiring expertise in written patrimonial activities.

The centre comprises the Historical Archives, Library, Research and Reference Service and University Relations sections. In its facilities, researchers have access to over 600 linear meters of paper archives, 35,000 books and a wide selection of reviews and electronic resources linked to sport and Olympism.

The OSC facilitates exchanges and collaboration between universities and the IOC in view of promoting interest in Olympism by professors, researchers and students and getting high-level analysis from them on key topics related to the Olympic Movement and its evolution. In order to meet these objectives particular attention is given to the research grant programmes, the applied research projects and the activities concerning the Olympic studies network and monitoring.

Every year, the OSC awards a number of grants with the objective of encouraging research on the Olympic phenomenon, in the fields of human and social sciences. It also collaborates with researchers and postgraduate students for conducting applied research projects that respond to specific needs identified by the various IOC departments.

In April this year, the 2014 edition of the PhD Students Research Grant Programme was launched. This programme is part of a new OSC research plan and will be followed by other activities aimed at the academic community. The grant programme rules, an updated alphabetical list of the projects supported since 1999 and many of the final research reports (full papers) are available on the OSC web page.

The regular contact between the IOC OSC and the university-based OSCs and researchers worldwide has allowed for the creation of an informal network and the development of an Olympic studies monitoring project. Its main objective is to promote greater awareness, exchange and development of the field of Olympic studies thanks to the identification and dissemination of information on university expertise and their academic research, education, conferences and publication activities concerning Olympism. A selection of this information is regularly published on the OSC web page (see under Academic activities and network).

Furthermore, to reinforce the network, the OSC publishes a quarterly Newsletter. This electronic document is sent to our main academic contacts, informing them about the latest news on OSC and IOC activities likely to be of interest to them. It also offers a platform for exchanges on the academic activities dealing with Olympism across the world.

The Olympic phenomenon has always captured the interest of researchers, journalists and the general public, who wish to better understand its message, history and multi-dimensional impacts on society. This interest has risen in recent decades, coinciding with the growth in popularity of the Olympic Games and the Olympic Movement.

The IOC Olympic Studies Centre (OSC), created in 1982, has been a privileged witness and facilitator of this increasing interest and of the growing importance of the Olympic studies field within the academic community. Today, scholars from every discipline and culture contribute greatly to enriching knowledge of Olympic-related topics, challenges and impacts. They also help recall the roots of the Olympic Movement and the positive values of sport.