Flavio Pinto

Blockchain Technology for Trustworthy Anti-Doping Data Management

Flavio Pinto, PhD student

Flavio is a doctoral researcher within the Institute for Digital Technologies, but his contribution also extends to the Institute for Sport Business. A former engineer and businessman, Flavio is keen to develop this research where innovative digital technologies are expected to help tackling the problem of doping in sports.

Flavio is originally from Brazil and is currently studying a PhD under the Institute for Digital Technologies. He holds a BEng in Electrical Engineering from Rio de Janeiro State University (Brazil), an MSc in Business Administration from IBMEC Business School (Brazil) and an MSc in Internet Technologies with Management from Loughborough University London.

Prior to his studies at Loughborough University London, Flavio spent over fifteen years in the telecommunications industry, occupying Sales Management, Business Development and Systems Engineering positions at global high-tech companies. Most recently he specialized in the Satellite Communications niche, strategizing technical solutions, developing businesses and leading sales processes for diverse networking scenarios of corporate customers in Brazil and Latin America. After moving to the UK in 2017, Flavio decided to take new career paths, expanding his knowledge into new domains of the high-tech sector, so he embarked on an Internet Technologies masters at Loughborough University London. It was here that Flavio renewed and diversified his interests in the field, leading him to engage in this PhD research.

PhD research description

As a potentially disruptive technology, Blockchain has attracted the interest of academia and industry. Currently evolving in its maturity curve to address problems of diverse economic sectors, newer Blockchain-based initiatives incorporate improvements that enable the development of innovative decentralized autonomous applications. Currently, use cases are emerging in industries such as Banking, Supply Chain, Governance, Financial Markets, Healthcare, Insurance, Retail, Manufacturing amongst others. This research is conducted under the joint supervision of the Institute for Digital Technologies and the Institute for Sport Business and aims to investigate new technological approaches combining Blockchain and other digital technologies for improving the processes of doping control in sports. During the past two decades, the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) has been leading collaborative global efforts towards a doping-free sports environment.

Despite the recognizable progress obtained from a coordinated set of regulations, processes and technological tools, certain gaps are still detectable. Cases exposing sophisticated schemes for corruption of samples, extortion by doping control agents and cyber-attacks towards central servers to leak athletes’ sensitive data, are some of the examples that, from time to time, emerge as scandals taking the front-pages of the news and undermining the spirit of fair-play in sport. This research can represent a shift of paradigm in doping control governance by leveraging novel technologies to create a trustworthy ecosystem, where processes can become more automated, data can be stored in a decentralised and non-repudiable manner, stakeholders can interact more privately and safely, networks can be more resilient and transactions and supply-chain steps can be fully traced and audited, bringing valuable benefits to the whole sport community.

PhD supervisors

Awards, grants or scholarships received

Flavio was awarded a Research Studentship from Loughborough University London.

Interests and activities

Flavio has an interest in technological innovations and their impacts in businesses and societies. In his free time, Flavio enjoys arts, reading, travelling and playing with his children.

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