The Gold Coast 2018 Commonwealth Games commences today, with more than 6,600 athletes and team officials from 71 Commonwealth nations and territories participating in this mega event.
The Commonwealth Games Federation (CGF) is the organisation responsible for the direction and control of the Commonwealth Games and Commonwealth Youth Games, and for delivering on the vision of the Commonwealth Sports Movement. The Commonwealth is an association of sovereign nations, all of which (except for two) were formerly part of the British Empire. The Gold Coast 2018 Commonwealth Games (GC2018) is the largest sporting event to be staged in Australia this decade and will feature the largest integrated sports program in Commonwealth Games history, comprising 18 sports and seven para-sports.
Members of our AISTS Alumni community will be there at the Games and we recently caught up with Pranav Knot, class of 2007.
AISTS - You graduated from the class of 2007. Where has the sports road taken you since then?
After completing the MAS, I was fortunate enough to get a job with EKS (Event Knowledge Services), now known as Lagardère Sports Switzerland. My very first project happened to be in my home town in Pune, India in 2008 at the Commonwealth Youth Games. Since then I have had an exciting journey working on Olympic Games Bids and Commonwealth Games across world. The main projects have included the Olympic Bids in Istanbul, Budapest and Krakow and Commonwealth Games in Delhi, Glasgow, Gold Coast and Birmingham on behalf of the Commonwealth Games Federation (CGF).
AISTS - Tell us about your role with EKS and how long you have been with them
I started working with EKS at the beginning of 2008. My role includes planning and project management for major events focusing on areas of venues and transport. I have supported the development of Games Master Plans for Commonwealth Games and Olympic in my role as Project Manager working with architects, cost planners and transport experts. I have also worked as a Project Manager for the CGF Evaluation Commissions and Coordination Commissions for 2014, 2018 and 2022 Games cycles.
AISTS - EKS had the Nelson Mandela quote of “Sport has the power to change the world”. How are you adding to this with your role?
At EKS, our endeavour is to use the Games as a catalyst for achieving long term development goals for cities and regions. I believe through the projects we have undertaken at EKS we have been able to leave positive legacies for each of the cities we have worked in.
In our experience sport had a unique ability to unite communities and help them work towards common objectives.
AISTS - Tell us about your role at the gold coast 2018 Commonwealth Games and what is involved with it
At the Commonwealth Games in the Gold Coast I am working as a Project Manager for the Observer Programme by the CGF. The Observer Programme includes structured classroom sessions and venue visits which provide attendees an understanding of Games requirements in a “live” Games context. While the main audience for the Observer Programme is the next Host City and potential Bid Cities for Commonwealth Games, it also attracts other event organisers and sport organisations. At the Gold Coast 2018 we are expecting approximately 100 attendees from 15 different organisations to take part in the programme. The Observer Programme is a key component of the CGF Transfer of Knowledge initiative. In the lead up to the Games I have been involved in the Gold Coast Games through the Technical Reviews and Coordination Commissions meetings undertaken by the CGF to get an oversight on the project status. These reviews took place on a six-monthly basis.
AISTS - What’s your next big project?
I don’t know yet but I have been working on Feasibility Study for an Olympic Games in Brisbane and involved in foundation planning work for Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games.
AISTS - What one thing did you learn at the AISTS that you still keep in mind for your work today?
I consider myself privileged to have worked in many different countries in the world and the experience of being with classmates of various backgrounds and cultures at AISTS prepared me for this.
AISTS - Do you have any advice for those looking at the next step in their sports administration career and wanting to get into events?
I am still in a learning phase of my career myself. The only advice I would give is to take in all the experiences you can and keep learning every day.
About AISTS - Master of Advanced Studies in Sport Administration and Technology
The International Academy of Sports Science and Technology (AISTS) was founded in 2000 by the International Olympic Committee and leading Swiss institutions and universities.
A not-for-profit foundation, the AISTS is committed to professionalising sports management through continuing education, applied research and an engaging platform for industry connections.
The AISTS flagship programme is the 15-month postgraduate Master of Advanced Studies in Sport Administration and Technology – educating aspiring sport managers from all over the world since 2003. Each year, the AISTS brings together over 140 international sports experts in the sciences of Management, Technology, Law, Medicine, and Sociology – all in the efforts of building a better world through sport.
Graduates go on to pursue careers with sports organisations, such as the International Olympic Committee, international sports federations, and sports agencies.