Impact of the Games on Olympic host cities, Richard Cashman
The impact of an Olympic Games on a host city is a matter of continuing debate and even controversy. Staging an Olympic Games represents a long and expensive commitment of a city to this peak sporting festival. The impact can be divided into four separate periods: the winning of the right to host the Games; the seven year preparation period; the staging the Games themselves and the post-Games period. There are particular challenges faced in each of the four periods. There are a wide range of views about the impact of the Olympic Games on host cities. Some consider that the Games are a worthwhile investment in the global future of a city whereas others regard such a commitment as problematic because the Games have become too large and costly. There is also much debate about the benefits versus the burdens of hosting an Olympic Games. Some, such as radical scholar Helen Lenskyj, contend that the benefits and burdens are unequally shared. There has also been discussion about whether there is adequate consultation of the host community before a bid is launched and whether hosting the Games leads to an erosion of human rights in the host city.
Dr Richard Cashman is Associate Professor in History and Director of the Australian Centre for Olympic Studies at the University of Technology, Sydney (UTS). His research interest in Olympic studies focus on the legacy of the Games and post-Games policy, the history of the Olympic Games, and the Olympics and the local community in the host city, in particular the Sydney 2000 Olympic Games. He has widely published in this area, including Staging the Olympics: The Event and its Impact (with A. Hughes, 1999), The Bitter-Sweet Awakening: the Legacy of the Sydney 2000 Olympic Games (2006) and Benchmark Games: The Sydney 2000 Paralympic Games (with S. Darcy, 2008).