Sports Lawyer In The Spotlight: James Kitching
Welcome to the first edition of LawInSport’s new series ‘Sports Lawyer in the Spotlight’, where we go behind the scenes with the leading sports lawyers around the world to get to know a little more about them and to highlight their contribution to the sports industry.
Our first interviewee is Mr. James Kitching. James is currently an independent consultant advising the global sports industry on regulation, governance, integrity, and strategy matters. He recently left the role of Director of Football Regulatory at FIFA to return home to Australia and is a valued member of the LawInSport Editorial Board. At FIFA, James managed a multinational and multidisciplinary subdivision with 5 departments and approximately 60 staff, which oversees all aspects of the FIFA football regulatory framework. James is directly responsible for the implementation of 2 key projects aligned with the FIFA Vision 2020-23: the FIFA Clearing House and the new regime for regulating football agents.
Prior to joining FIFA, James was the founder and managing director of a multinational consultancy specialising in sports regulation and governance. He also spent 5 years at the Asian Football Confederation, where he helped modernise the sports and corporate regulatory framework, along with managing the bidding processes for Asian competitions and acting as secretariat to the AFC judicial bodies.
We sat down with James in January 2021 just prior to his departure from FIFA to conduct the following interview. It has since been edited slightly (with James’ permission) to take into account the fact that he is no longer employed by the world governing body for football.
Manan Agrawal, Editor
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Manan is currently an Editor at LawInSport. Before joining LawInSport, Manan practiced law at a leading media and entertainment law firm in Mumbai, India. Manan has been a part of LawInSport's inaugural Academy Mentoring Scheme and was mentored by LawInSport CEO and Founder, Sean Cottrell.
Marcos is the Marketing and Editorial Associate at LawInSport.
Prior to joining LawInSport, Marcos undertook a 12-month legal internship with one of the largest anti-slavery organisations in the world, International Justice Mission, at their field office in La Paz, Bolivia. He graduated with an LLM in Commercial & Corporate law from Queen Mary University of London in 2020.