Sport mega-event organizing committees have three uniquely challenging characteristics: They grow rapidly; they are temporary; they are accountable for event symbolisms. Effects of these characteristics are examined via participant observation and in-depth interviews with twelve lower-level employees of the Beijing Organizing Committee for the Olympic Games (BOCOG) two years before the Beijing Olympics. Four themes about their working lives were identified: The daily work is mundane; BOCOG is bureaucratic; privilege has its privileges; my immediate working environment nurtures me. The mega-event context was also important; workers described it using: The Olympics are great and grand; the Olympics are valuable for China; the Olympics illustrate the challenges that China faces in the 21st century; BOCOG is uniquely high profile; BOCOG helps us to understand Chinese society. Employees used four themes to describe the coping strategies they applied to manage the challenges of working for the organizing committee: I have to confront or adjust; my work at BOCOG allows me to develop myself; working at BOCOG represents a passionate life with idealism; I get to be part of history. Findings suggest that social support, the symbolic significance of the event, and learning through event work mitigate the stresses of working to host a mega-event. Future work should examine the workers’ lives longitudinally over the lifespan of an organizing committee to delineate the dynamics of meanings and experiences in mega-event work.
Xiaoyan Xing and Laurence Chalip
Chengli Tien, Huai-Chun Lo and Hsiou-Wei Lin
This study concerns research related to mega events, such as the Olympic Games, to determine whether the economic impact of the Olympic Games on the host countries is significant. This study uses two methods, panel data analysis and event study, to test hypotheses based on the data from 15 countries that have hosted 24 summer and winter Olympic Games. The results indicate that the economic impact of the Olympic Games on the host countries is only significant in terms of certain parameters (i.e., gross domestic product performance and unemployment) in the short term. These findings provide decision makers with comprehensive and multidimensional knowledge about the economic impact of hosting a mega event and about whether their objectives can be realized as expected.
Tang Tang and Roger Cooper
Mega events, such as the Olympics, provide a unique context and valuable opportunity to study changing media use patterns in today’s convergent environment. This study examined how and why audiences watched the 2016 Rio Olympics across media, and found that while TV was still the dominant platform for mega-event viewing, audiences tended to seek alternative content and niche sports on computers, and primarily used mobile devices to get a second-screen experience during the Rio Games. In addition, findings suggest that multiscreen Olympics viewing was not exclusively determined by individual characteristics and psychological needs. Structures, media use routine, and social contexts played a big (though maybe less obvious) role in driving screen choice.
John Nadeau, Norm O’Reilly, Erdinc Cakmak, Louise Heslop and Sonja Verwey
In this paper, the authors address a literature gap with regard to sponsorship outcomes of mega-events and their host countries. This paper is about research that investigates the interrelatedness of three important images—host country, mega-event, and sponsor images—from the perspective of a cameo appearance building on the sponsorship and brand placement literature. It is based on the premise that the host city makes a cameo appearance during a mega-event for sport tourists while the event itself makes a cameo appearance for residents of the host country. The results indicate that mega-events can have a transitory influence, and that cameo effects exist, but that the patterns of relationships are different for sport tourists and residents.
Lin Yu, Hanhan Xue and Joshua I. Newman
over 850 other major national-level events. In turn, by 2015 the value of the sports industry in Shanghai had increased to 42 billion RMB (about 6.1 billion USD) ( Ping, 2015 ). In describing the function and form of such major sporting events—often referred to as “mega-events”—sport sociologists tend
By Heather Sykes. Taylor & Francis, 2017, Abingdon, Oxon and New York, NY. In their book, The sexual and gender politics of sport mega-events: Roving colonialism , Heather Sykes and contributors Manal Hamzeh and Salima Bhimani document and analyze activism focused on neo-liberal and securitized
Kristine Toohey and Tracy Taylor
Since 1972, there has been an association between terrorism, violence, and the Olympic Games. The events of September 11, 2001, however, clearly reescalated concerns about the Games being a terrorist target. This conceptual article discusses the theories of the risk society and the precautionary principle to understand and interpret how visitors to the most recent Summer Games, Athens 2004, framed their decision to attend. Consistent with risk theory, a strong public and financial commitment to safety at the Games was evident, with the organizers undertaking wide-ranging large-scale risk management initiatives. Athens attendees, while displaying tenets of risk aversion and engagement with a discourse of fear, also showed resilience, resistance, and indifference to potential terrorism threats. Implications for both theory and practice are noted.
Beth A. Cianfrone and Timothy Kellison
Following the cancellation of the 2020 National Collegiate Athletic Association Men’s Basketball Final Four, the Atlanta Basketball Host Committee faced the unique challenge of executing a “postevent” wind-down amid a global health emergency and citywide stay-at-home mandate. While a significant portion of the host committee’s tasks were completed in the days and weeks after the cancellation, one key component that lingered was event legacy. In this study, the authors examined how a local organizing committee’s legacy planning was disrupted as a result of the coronavirus pandemic. Based on interviews with National Collegiate Athletic Association and host committee officials, direct and participant-based observation, and an analysis of local and social media reporting, the authors described the Atlanta Basketball Host Committee’s pre- and postpandemic legacy plans. This study underscores the potential enduring nature of legacy plans, even during unprecedented crises that threaten the headlining event.
Claudio M. Rocha
, 2003 ). As private funding has proven to be a fallacy for most hosts all around the world ( Solberg & Preuss, 2007 ), residents’ support has worked as a seal of approval for public money investment in sport mega-events like the OG. Local residents’ support creates legitimacy for government investment
Eilidh H.R. Macrae
Voluntary sports clubs (VSCs) provide the primary opportunities for organized community sport in the UK and thus hold the responsibility for delivering on mega-event sports participation legacies. This study presents findings from open-ended questionnaires and interviews conducted in two phases (Phase 1—Spring, 2013; Phase 2—Summer, 2015) with representatives from a sample (n = 39) of VSCs to understand their ability to deliver on the participation legacy goals of London 2012 and the 2014 Commonwealth Games in Glasgow. Thematic analysis of the data outlined three themes where support for VSCs should be placed when planning future mega-events: building VSC capacity, retaining members in the long-term, and promoting general visibility of the VSC throughout the event. Bid teams who hope to use mega-events as catalysts for sports participation increases should direct funding and guidance toward VSCs to ensure they have the tools, knowledge, and capacity to deliver on national sports participation ambitions.