WADA holds third annual in-person meeting of its Sport Human Intelligence Network in Montreal


The World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) is pleased to announce that its independent Intelligence and Investigations (I&I) Department hosted its third annual in-person meeting of its Sport Human Intelligence Network (SHIN) in Montreal, Canada. 

The two-day meeting, which concluded today, convened more than 20 representatives from the anti-doping community at WADA’s headquarters, and focused on themes such as: best practices for human source handling; confidential source recruitment and troubleshooting; the global whistleblowing landscape; guidelines for human source management; the ongoing development of an International Standard for Intelligence and Investigations; and more. 

The Head of WADA’s Confidential Information Unit, Damien Larin, said: “WADA is pleased to have had the opportunity to host members of the Sport Human Intelligence Network at its head office this week. On numerous occasions over the past few years, we have seen how collaborative intelligence sharing can lead to successful doping investigations. SHIN has played a key role in building a community of anti-doping source handlers, which has greatly augmented the collective intelligence gathering capabilities of Anti-Doping Organizations around the world.  

“Now that SHIN is well-established, we look forward to working with its members to create a comprehensive foundation of source handling best practices within anti-doping. This will be key as we continue to grow our collective human intelligence capabilities with the development and implementation in 2027 of an International Standard tailored to Intelligence and Investigations. In a time of unprecedented scrutiny over confidential source handling in anti-doping, it is essential that WADA I&I continues to support organizations around the world in developing capacity in this area.” 

SHIN originated from discussions held during a WADA Anti-Doping I&I Network meeting in 2019, during which WADA I&I proposed its establishment. SHIN was officially founded in 2020 and held its first of two virtual meetings shortly thereafter. The network’s first in-person meeting was held in Warsaw, Poland, in October 2022, where WADA President Witold Bańka was on hand to open the meeting and endorse the creation of SHIN. 

SHIN’s objectives include: 

  • Creating and maintaining a network of confidential source managers/handlers; 
  • Establishing bilateral relationships for purposes of intelligence sharing and joint source operations; 
  • Sharing best practices on confidential source handling; 
  • Troubleshooting common source handling challenges; 
  • Improving confidential source and operational security; 
  • Identifying opportunities for proactive and strategic intelligence collection; and 
  • Promoting the development of HUMINT (intelligence gathering) among anti-doping stakeholders. 

SHIN members must also meet specific criteria, notably: 

  • Demonstrating they maintain an active anti-doping intelligence gathering capability; 

  • Demonstrating they actively manage or engage with confidential sources; and 

  • Managing an active platform for the reception of confidential information from the public.