Sean is the founder and CEO of LawInSport. Founded in 2010, LawInSport has become the "go to sports law website" for sports lawyers and sports executives across the world.
LawInSport is a knowledge hub, educational platform and global community of people working in or with an interest in sport and the law.
Our objective is to help people ‘understand the rules of the game™’. What does this mean? It means people in sport having access to information that enables them to have a better understanding the rules and regulations that govern the relationships, behaviours and processes within sports. This in turn creates a foundation based on the principles of the rule of law, protecting the rights of everyone working and participating in sport.
Why is this important?
Whether it is an individual or an organisation we believe everyone benefits from effective rule of law. It creates:
- Legal certainty;
- Better governance models;
- A more investible environment for sports from both the public and private sectors;
- A safer competitive and professional environment for sport;
- A sports sector in which people can focus on playing and enjoying sport; and
- Reduces unnecessary distraction caused by opaque legal and regulatory systems.
In practice this means not only being able to access and understand the law, regulations and jurisprudence, but also having access to professional legal representation.
What does this mean in practice?
We work with our members and the wider stakeholders in the sports, business and legal communities to bring stakeholders together to share high quality, accessible and accurate legal information and create an environment that encourages a better understanding of the law and the regulatory framework in sport and practices.
What we do
We produce and publish peer-reviewed legal articles, podcasts and videos as well as organise and host networking events, seminars, webinars and conferences.
We also have a recruitment division that is dedicated to matching the best candidates with the best opportunities in sports law.
We believe that everyone should have access to and be able to understand the structures, regulations and laws that govern their sport. Having access to this information is a basic principle of the rule of law and one that is vital to the improvement of the administration of grassroots, amateur and professional of sport. The language used to explain these laws, rules and structures should be clear and concise.
Through providing peer-reviewed, well researched, informative, engaging and balanced legal content we will help improve the access to and understanding of legal issues in sport; in turn we will help improve the governance and administration of sport.
Through our platform and by hosting events we will bring together the key stakeholders in sport (e.g. sports lawyers, sports executives and administrators, business professionals, athletes, support staff, academics and students) to build an accessible global community. Through this community of individuals and organisations we will encourage dialog and debate to help remove artificial boundaries that restrict individual and organisational development in sport and associated professions, such as the legal profession.
We commit to maintain our neutrality by segregating our editorial and commercial streams which means we never have to compromise on our editorial integrity. We do not accept payment for people to publish or promote content on LawInSport or people to speak at our events.
We aspire to make what can be complex and inaccessible legal information accessible to everyone who has an interest in sport without compromising on academic rigour and legal accuracy.
We commit to constructively and consistently challenge practices and structures in sport, and associated professions such as the legal profession, that hold back the development of individuals or groups of individuals based on their ethnicity, nationality, physical or mental impairment, religion, gender, sex, sexual orientation or socioeconomic background.
What we do
LawInSport is an educational media business that provides expert commentary and analysis on the latest legal issues and developments from the world of sport. We cover everything from anti-doping, to ambush marketing, to corporate governance. Alongside our online platform, we also host events for the LawInSport community, including seminars, conferences and networking events. We advertise sports law practices, professional and academic courses and job vacancies in the sector. We also provide consultancy and training on social media, digital publishing, events management and the sports law industry (trends, career development, etc).
Our events and materials are utilised by a spectrum of stakeholders, including by governments and sports federations in developing their sports policies and regulations; lawyers in their professional development; sports executives and administrators in their day to day roles; leading counsel in their legal submissions at disciplinary disputes in bodies including the Court of Arbitration for Sport; and mainstream media outlets such as the BBC, Bloomberg, The New York Times, Associated Press, CNN and The Telegraph, who regularly reference us and contact us for comment.
We peer-review all of our articles to ensure they are factually and legally accurate, informative, engaging, and enjoyable to read. Perhaps most importantly, we maintain our neutrality by segregating our editorial and commercial streams, which means that we never have to compromise on our editorial integrity.
At the heart of what we do is to make the law and sports regulation, which is often complex and inaccessible, accessible to everyone who has an interest in sport without compromising on academic rigour. By helping to disseminate vital knowledge and leading opinions on matters of law, we play a key role in the development of domestic and international sports law policy and regulation.
LawInSport was founded in late 2010, by Sean Cottrell (now CEO) and Alfonso Valero (now Consultant) the vision for LawInSport was to provide a useful resource for people who wanted to find out more about contemporary legal and regulatory issues in sport. At the end of 2012, LawInSport was widely recognised as a leading authority in the field of sports law. At this time, our CEO, Sean Cottrell, saw the potential growth in sports law that was consistent with the rapid success of LawInSport and started to transform LawInSport and the central team (see below) into the market leading business it is today.
Today our global membership of over 16,000 members includes top European football clubs, sports leagues, international sports federation, sports executives, governments, sports brands, marketing agencies, anti-doping organisations, sports lawyers, players agents, academic institutions, sports administrators, professional athletes, sports charities, academics and students.
Chris is the Editor, and takes responsibility for the review of content in conjunction with the Editorial Board. Prior to joining LawInSport, Chris graduated from Nottingham University, and trained and worked as a litigation lawyer at King & Wood & Mallesons SJ Berwin.
Manali is the COO at LawInSport and executive contributor of the editorial board for LawInSport. She holds an LLM in Sports Law from Nottingham Law School (Nottingham Trent University).