No more hats thrown into the Olympic rings: an analysis of the Olympic bidding process
Shoemaker, Megan Marie
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This research seeks to determine the necessary conditions for the United States to host another Olympic Games. To lay the foundation for my research, I historically trace the declining number of cities bidding for the Olympics. While exogenous factors such as political protests, terrorist acts, and boycotts contribute to a decline in the number of candidate cities from 1968 to 1984, modern disinterest in hosting the Olympics is motivated by endogenous dynamics derived from the bidding process. To determine how the bidding process affects the likelihood of hosting the Olympics and uncover the roots of successful bids, I analyze four case studies of former United States bids. These case studies include: Denver’s withdrawn bid for the 1976 Winter Olympics, Los Angeles’ successful bid for the 1984 Games, Boston’s relinquished bid for the 2024 Olympics, and consequentially, Los Angeles’ bid for the 2024 Olympics. I argue the structure of the bidding process inherently favors special interests with the most to gain from hosting the Games at the expense of the city as a whole. Stemming from the central condition of public support, I deduce six underlying conditions that are pivotal for successful bids: 1) the use of existing facilities and infrastructure; 2) absence of opposition groups; 3) private funding; 4) ‘insurance’ measures against cost overruns; 5) alignment of Olympic plans and urban development; and 6) greater use of the region. These conditions do not guarantee a successful Olympic bid, but are fundamental for the Olympic Games to return to the United States.
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Boston University Medical Center, Department of Marketing/Public Affairs (Boston University Medical Center, Department of Marketing/Public Affairs, 1993)