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Jun 10, 2018

Drug testing is a perennial topic in sports these days. High profile suspensions, accusations at world champions and a clamour for "clean competition" in the face of apparent state-sanctioned doping has seen the subject's importance to the public seemingly increase in recent years. This talk - part of our 2017 Edinburgh Fringe run - will explore the reasons why drug testing fails to catch organised cheats, and in many cases punishes the wrong people.

Dr Paul Dimeo has been a lecturer at Stirling since 2002. He began researching drug use in sport and testing from a historical perspective. In essence, he wanted to find out when and why athletes used drugs and when, who and why policies emerge to control this usage. These questions underpinned his first book 'A History of Drug Use in Sport: Beyond Good and Evil' (Routledge, 2007).

Subsequently, he researched doping in the context of the Cold War, spending a semester at the University of Texas on a Fulbright Commission scholarship (2012). Whilst a resident in Austin (Lance Armstrong's home town), all the evidence about organised doping in the American professional cycling team was published. This inspired him to develop more contemporary interests in the social impact of anti-doping policy, and the relationship of media scandals with policy organisations. he is currently working on a second book with Professor Verner Moller which explores the reasons for the current crisis in anti-doping, questions of human costs of the war on drugs in sports, and potential ways forward.