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Sochi's Long Term Economic Impact: Good Or Bad?
Forbes ^ | 02/24/2014 | Andrew Bender

Posted on 02/24/2014 12:54:05 PM PST by SeekAndFind

As soon as the Winter Olympics draw to a close tonight in Sochi, another sport will begin: debate over whether the city will actually benefit from hosting the games.

“If costs are the benchmark for ‘successful’ Games,” says Janice Forsyth, Director of the International Center for Olympic Studies at the University of Western Ontario, in London, Ontario, Canada, “Sochi is the most unsuccessful games in history, bar none.”

The Sochi organizing committee spent an estimated US$51 billion on the Games, surpassing the next most expensive Olympics (Beijing Summer Games, 2008) by about $8 billion.

The problem is that “rarely, if ever” do Olympics turn a profit, says Mauro Guillen, Professor of International Management at the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School. “It’s expensive and the venues are normally hard to use after the games.”

Moreover, Forsyth says, “The Games are always a loser for the public, who pays for the majority of the costs.” National and local governments are often left paying down the debts from the Olympic spending for years, if not decades. “The Games work best in authoritarian states, where the government can use public funds however it chooses to make the Olympic project work, without public input.”

Plus, the International Olympic Committee provides no backing. It can’t. Its charter states “The IOC shall have no financial responsibility whatsoever in respect of the organization and staging of the Olympic Games.”

“Nifty little clause isn’t it?” asks Forsyth.

“The only Games where the Olympic industry can actually say there was a profit, and the public didn’t pay, are the 1984 Games in Los Angeles,” says Forsyth. “The mayor (Tom Bradley) assured the public none of their tax dollars would be spent on hosting, and he held true to that promise.” Instead, the Los Angeles games were financed through corporate contributions.

(Excerpt) Read more at forbes.com ...


TOPICS: Culture/Society; Foreign Affairs; News/Current Events; Russia
KEYWORDS: 2014olympics; olympics; russia; sochi

1 posted on 02/24/2014 12:54:05 PM PST by SeekAndFind
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To: SeekAndFind

I haven’t been to Beijing since 2007, but someone who went there recently told me that the famous Olympic Bird’s Nest Stadium is mostly unused, dirty, and is simply a curious tourist attraction.


2 posted on 02/24/2014 12:55:38 PM PST by SeekAndFind
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To: SeekAndFind

All of their planning goes into preparing for the games, but it seems that not enough planning goes into what happens to the facilities after the games. They need two committees, one for the games and one for after the games so that they can capitalize on the potential economic benefits after the lights go out.


3 posted on 02/24/2014 1:07:13 PM PST by virgil
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To: virgil

Well, Atlanta was smart because they built an Olympic Stadium that could be quickly reconfigured for baseball use, and remain in use for many, many years into the future.

Wait a minute...


4 posted on 02/24/2014 1:10:51 PM PST by Buckeye McFrog
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To: SeekAndFind

If they think that Sochi was unready for the Olympics, just wait for the nightmare at Rio.


5 posted on 02/24/2014 1:10:52 PM PST by Blood of Tyrants (Haven't you lost enough freedoms? Support an end to the WOD now.)
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To: SeekAndFind
I don't care.

In fact, I hope that the Olympics crippled the economy of the now-being-reconstructed Soviet Union.

6 posted on 02/24/2014 1:12:01 PM PST by elkfersupper
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To: SeekAndFind

Most US cities already have most of the facilities needed to stage the Games, but the IOC wants kickbacks from building new facilities.


7 posted on 02/24/2014 1:13:47 PM PST by dfwgator
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To: SeekAndFind
Sochi was about changing the hearts and minds of the people of the world away from Reagan's "Evil Empire" and Bush's claim that Russia was bankrolling the "Axis of Evil."

Putin used the Olympics to show that Russia has a long history of arts, letters, music, and dance, and was not the enemy of the world that a falling America claimed it to be.

Russia would spend everything to accomplish that media public relations change. It doesn't hurt that Obama is reiging over a declining United States, while Russia and China are presenting a resurging replacement.

-PJ

8 posted on 02/24/2014 1:15:47 PM PST by Political Junkie Too (If you are the Posterity of We the People, then you are a Natural Born Citizen.)
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To: SeekAndFind

Instead of spending so much money on the buildings, why don’t they just have the WINTER Olympics in some place that is actually cold in February. Say Innsbruck, Austria or some other location that is actually on the World Cup downhill ski circuit.


9 posted on 02/24/2014 1:20:52 PM PST by woodbutcher1963
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To: SeekAndFind
Sochi's Browndo. It's got stuff!
10 posted on 02/24/2014 1:23:57 PM PST by DannyTN
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To: SeekAndFind

How long is LONG TERM?


11 posted on 02/24/2014 1:24:50 PM PST by Don Corleone ("Oil the gun..eat the cannoli. Take it to the Mattress.")
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To: Don Corleone
In Obamica, "long term" ended yesterday.

-PJ

12 posted on 02/24/2014 1:27:09 PM PST by Political Junkie Too (If you are the Posterity of We the People, then you are a Natural Born Citizen.)
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To: SeekAndFind

Hopefully the South Koreans can figure out how to make the venues a long-term thing when the next Winter Olympics come around for Pyongchang. They have been building things there, like the big ski jump, for years.


13 posted on 02/24/2014 1:29:03 PM PST by GeronL (Vote for Conservatives not for Republicans!)
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To: woodbutcher1963

Having snow on the mountains isn’t going to give you an ice rink, curling rink, bobsled track and all the other various buildings.


14 posted on 02/24/2014 1:32:50 PM PST by discostu (I don't meme well.)
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To: GeronL

RE: Hopefully the South Koreans can figure out how to make the venues a long-term thing when the next Winter Olympics come around for Pyongchang.

Seoul 1988 made a profit of $300 Million. This I think, is still a record that hasn’t been topped. One of a handful of Olympics that actually made money.

I think the South Koreans can learn from their predecessors.

See here:

http://www.china.org.cn/english/sports/111340.htm


15 posted on 02/24/2014 1:33:50 PM PST by SeekAndFind
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To: SeekAndFind

Their going to end up with a real operable ski resort probably. heh


16 posted on 02/24/2014 1:35:56 PM PST by GeronL (Vote for Conservatives not for Republicans!)
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To: GeronL

The irony is Sochi has always been advertised as a SUMMER RESORT near the Black Sea.


17 posted on 02/24/2014 1:41:39 PM PST by SeekAndFind
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To: SeekAndFind

Yep. It’s the warmest city in Russia isn’t it? heh


18 posted on 02/24/2014 1:42:42 PM PST by GeronL (Vote for Conservatives not for Republicans!)
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To: Political Junkie Too
Russia would spend everything to accomplish that media public relations change

My impression is similar to yours. The world, with many people too young to remember the cold war or the Jimmy Carter boycott, was introduced to Russia. Putin succeeded wonderfully. I suspect that Sochi will become a cruise ship destination. The other way Putin succeeded was with the Russian people. Their pride at the end of the Olympics was apparant.

What Putin did was incredible. Obama did everything he could to turn it into a gay pride embarrassment for Putin. The media and Obama practically dared the terrorists to do bad stuff. Yet, Putin pulled it off. And those opening and closing ceremonies? Wow. Compare that to a Superbowl halftime show.

So, yeah, I'd say Putin succeeded. One wonders if it will be the last successful Olympics, with the way the world is going.

19 posted on 02/24/2014 1:43:09 PM PST by grania
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To: woodbutcher1963
Salt Lake City?

Lake Tahoe?

20 posted on 02/24/2014 1:53:32 PM PST by Paladin2
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To: grania

Could not care less about the olympics. Just hope it doesn’t come to FL.


21 posted on 02/24/2014 1:54:15 PM PST by bicyclerepair (TERM LIMITS .......... TERM LIMITS .......... TERM LIMITS)
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To: SeekAndFind

50 billion spent?
Sochi?
I’d rather go to Newark.


22 posted on 02/24/2014 2:18:34 PM PST by Joe Boucher ((FUBO) obammy lied and lied and lied)
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To: discostu

With the exception of the bobsled track, many cities already have the facilities to host the Winter Olympics without having to spend $5-50 Billion. They need to stop picking places where it is warm in the winter. I am sure a lot of the $50 billion Russia spent did not end up in the bobsled track. More likely in Putin’s Swiss bank account.

Denver did not want the 1970 winter Olympics because they did not want to bankrupt the city. They already had the mountains and climate.

Several cold climate cities like Salt Lake and Calgary have been successful in hosting the Olympics. Even small towns like Lake Placid ,St. Moritz and Squaw Valley have done OK.

Structures can be built anywhere. However, you can not replace the Swiss/French/Austria Alps or the US/Canadian Rocky Mountains for cold weather and natural snow in February.


23 posted on 02/24/2014 2:19:47 PM PST by woodbutcher1963
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To: Blood of Tyrants

They say 50 percent spent on the games went to graft, corruption etc.
Ya gots to know that’s about all the games have become, a way to soak em.


24 posted on 02/24/2014 2:22:33 PM PST by Joe Boucher ((FUBO) obammy lied and lied and lied)
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To: woodbutcher1963

Not many cities have the facilities to host all these sports at the same time WITH massive TV coverage. Plus an Olympic village and tons of hotel space.

Not sure why you keep saying they need to stop being someplace warm, Sochi was the closest they’ve had to a warm weather Winter Games site and it was still plenty cold.

Denver might have had the mountains, but in 1970 that’s all they had.

Structures are where the expensive part of hosting an Olympics is. Nobody already has the ability to run 22 major sporting events simultaneously. They might have 1 good sized ice rink but for the Olympics you need to be able to run hockey, figure skating, and two different types of speed skating roughly simultaneously, 1 rink won’t cut it.

As long as there’s mountains nearby that will get snow (Vancouver really tested the concept of “nearby”) and room to build all the buildings you can run one. But then there’s the will to spend all that money.


25 posted on 02/24/2014 2:26:44 PM PST by discostu (I don't meme well.)
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To: SeekAndFind

I heard one commentator say that Russians have always went to Switzerland if they wanted to ski and that now they will be able to stay in Russia and go to Sochi.


26 posted on 02/24/2014 2:46:19 PM PST by Slyfox (When Jesus sees a momma holding her little baby, it reminds him of his own momma.)
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To: SeekAndFind

Well Russia’s loss of the Kiev Street Riot event will be good for the Ukrainians —


27 posted on 02/24/2014 3:14:15 PM PST by Uncle Chip
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To: SeekAndFind

How about holding the games in the same spot every year.


28 posted on 02/24/2014 3:15:56 PM PST by lacrew (Mr. Soetoro, we regret to inform you that your race card is over the credit limit.)
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To: grania
And those opening and closing ceremonies? Wow. Compare that to a Superbowl halftime show.


29 posted on 02/24/2014 3:34:27 PM PST by Dagnabitt (Amnesty is Treason. Its agents are Traitors.)
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