The Badminton World Federation (BWF) today staged its 81st BWF Annual General Meeting and first virtual AGM webcast from Copenhagen.
In a landmark result for the sport, the Membership approved the proposal to ensure geographical and gender representation on the BWF Council by establishing a framework that guarantees global board representation and a minimum representation of each gender.
In particular, the Membership-approved changes to the constitution ensures at least 30 per cent of each gender on Council and among the representatives from each continental region.
This falls in line with the recommendation of the International Olympic Committee (IOC) to target 30 per cent of gender representation in decision-making positions within International Federations (IFs) by 2020.
The second major step forward in BWF’s governance practices was amendments to the constitution that introduces vetting processes and minimum eligibility criteria for elected officials and hearing panel members of the BWF.
The votes took place as part of the BWF Virtual AGM – a decision that was motioned by the BWF Council in response to the COVID-19 pandemic and ratified today by the voting majority of the Membership.
BWF President Poul-Erik Høyer thanked the entire Membership for its cooperation in making the BWF Virtual AGM possible and noted the historical significance of the event.
“Today we have made history by staging the very first virtual AGM and I thank all Member Associations and voting delegates for being part of this journey,” Høyer said.
“I also want to congratulate the Membership for passing the landmark vote to approve the constitutional change to ensure gender equality on the BWF Council and for taking another important step to improve our governance practice by bringing in a vetting process for officials of the BWF.
“The virtual AGM today has allowed us to complete our governance requirements to host our AGM every year before 31 July, but also to deliver some important decisions to ensure we continuously improve our governance practice over time.
“Our focus on good governance is essential for the BWF and we continue to excel in this area.
“Just recently, the Association of Summer Olympic International Federations (ASOIF) released its third review of International Federation (IF) governance, and BWF ranked third overall among 31 Summer IFs.
“This is fantastic news for badminton that we are doing very well in this area.
“What’s more pleasing is that today as a federation we have been able to oversee the approval of a number of key Council proposals which highlights the ambition of the Membership and Council to continue to improve.
“It’s a great sign for the future of badminton and I congratulate everyone on these outstanding results.”
The BWF Membership also passed proposals to include the Chair of the Para Badminton Athletes’ Commission on Council and to limit the position of BWF President to four terms.
A number of other proposals were also passed including to approve amendments to the BWF Constitution to come in line with the 2020 Judicial Procedures which seeks to reorganise and improve our judicial structure.
The full outcomes of the BWF Virtual AGM will be published in the minutes on https://corporate.bwfbadminton.com/.