Ethics in Sport

National Plan for Ethics in Sport


The National Plan for Ethics in Sport (NPES) is an initiative of the Constitutional Government of Portugal, promoted by the Youth and Sports Secretary of State. It is headquartered in the Portuguese Institute of Sports and Youth, and streamlined by the NPES Coordination Office. NPES was launched on February 27, 2012 - the National Year of Ethics in Sports.


General Goal

NPES aims to encourage all citizens, particularly children and young people, to experience ethical values such as respect, honesty, tolerance and solidarity in sports and sports practice.

Nowadays, sport crosses transversely the whole society and to such a point that many authors consider it a mirror of society, reflecting its contradictions and crises and also its dreams and hopes. Sport is now considered a tool of social progress. Besides its fundamental role on health promotion and focus on physical and psychological well-being, sport also provides a “Parallel School” that might contribute to the assimilation of ethical values, essential for the building of a more balanced, more helpful and fairer society.

In our times, society is in constant change and everyday life is particularly stressful, marked by lack of time, fierce competitions at work, and increasing risk behaviours such as drug addiction, organized crime and social isolation.

We believe that sport is an excellent vehicle for the transmission of healthy lifestyles and ethical values which, being adopted in everyday life can produce significant changes in the way society is currently living. Therefore, NPES is an open and transversal project, directed to the whole society and to all citizens.


Specific Goals

- Promote the theme of Sports Ethics among the population, especially children and youth;

 - Enable a wide range of institutions, clubs, associations and schools to benefit from resources, facilities and activities, designed to ponder over Sports Ethics;

- Promote a set of reflections and activities within the community, so that sports values can be experienced and understood;

- Put the issue of Ethics in Sport on the agenda of the media;

- Make use of the most relevant sporting moments to publicize the issue of Ethics in Sport.

These goals rely on The Code of Sports Ethic for “Fair play in Sports”, from the Council of Europe, which is a statement of intention accepted by all the European Ministers responsible for Sports. This code assumes that ethical considerations that underlie fair play are not an optional item but something essential to any sports activity and which apply to all levels of competence in sports, from management to sports practice. It extends from leisure activities to professional competition, providing a solid ethical framework that helps to fight against the pressures of modern society which are threatening the traditional sports foundations such as fair play, sportsmanship, and volunteering.


NPES Strategic Axes

NPES is implemented through five major axes:

Training and Education

Inclusion of the Ethics in Sport topic at various levels of training, particularly in specialized training for teachers of primary and secondary education, and in specialized training of several sports agents (sports directors, coaches and referees). Development of awareness sessions about the Ethics in Sport theme in schools, sport clubs and other entities, with children, young people and parents.

Sports Practice and Events

Encourage the experience of ethical values throughout sports activities and events, whether in a formal or informal context.

Publications, Research and Digital Platforms

Specific publications on the subject, development of scientific studies on the Ethics of Sport, creation of a Portal and other digital tools devoted to the NPES and Ethics in Sport.


Development of multiple contests about Ethics in Sport.


Creation and implementation of a set of campaigns related to the Ethics in Sport subject, mainly in the media channels as radio, TV, Press and Internet. NPES is also the “Respect Campaign” promoter, implemented in the Portuguese Professional Football League.


Good Practices

Ethics Flag - It is a certification process of ethical values in sport, aimed at clubs, schools, projects or any other type of initiatives and entities that want to see their work recognized and certified in the promotion of ethical values through sport. It is also intended through this project to implement a process that identifies and promotes good practices, while ensuring a flexible and useful methodology for all types of agents.

Cartão Branco/Fairplay  - The Cartão Branco/Fairplay is a card that aims to recognize, highlight and reward ethically relevant attitudes and behaviour of athletes, coaches, managers, among other agents directly involved in the game, as well as spectators. It is a pedagogical card.

Sport Values Training Centre - A mobile educational resource available to go to schools, clubs, sport events, etc.It is a playful space with games and interactive activities where children and young people can reflect and deepen the issue of sport values.


Resources available in English Version

- National Plan for Ethics in sport
In this document you can find out about the PNED
See below:
National Plan for Ethics in Sport - Move for Values

- Code of Sport Ethics
In this document are translated the rules of conduct which should guide the action of the different stakeholders in the national sport, are the tutelary powers, practitioners, teachers, the School, coaches, judges and referees, managers, agents, parents, doctors and other health professionals, organisations and sports organisations, the spectators and the media.
See below:
Code of Sports Ethics

- Ethics in Sport – Guidelines for Coaches
Is a pedagogical document, which contains basic concepts related to sporting ethics, strategic development of pedagogical approach in a training situation
See below:
Ethics in Sport - Guidelines for Coaches

- Ethics in Sport – Guidelines for Teachers
Is a pedagogical document, where are contained basic concepts related to sporting ethics, strategic development of pedagogical approach in classroom
See below:
Ethics in Sport - Guidelines for Teachers


- Manual of Good Environmental Practices in Sport - Environmental Ethics

This manual adresses environmental ethics arguing that our moral concerns and our decisions should include the environment and the need for sustainable development, once that the existence of human beings is closely related to the existence of nature, whose rights must be also considered.

See bellow:

Manual of Good Environmental Practices in Sport

Ethics in Sport

Atualizado em: 06/02/2023


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