Peak event: the growth and decline of large events

Peak event: the growth and decline of large events

Submission ID:

109

Over the past decades the Olympic Games and similar large events have grown into mass media spectacles that attract millions of tourists and billions of viewers around the world, transforming host destinations. Here we show that we have reached ‘peak event’ – the point at which the relative size and importance of mega-events start to decline. For this purpose, this paper first analyses the increase in the number of sports events since 1960 to then focus on the growth, and recent stagnation, of the world’s largest events – the Olympic Games and the Men’s Football World Cup. Drawing on an unprecedented longitudinal dataset of growth indicators, it decomposes growth into five constitutive dimensions (sports, spectators, media, consumption and infrastructure) and identifies different phases of growth. While market saturation (=stagnating demand) and cost escalation (=decreasing supply) are the long-term drivers of peak event, the climate crisis and the pandemics crisis have accelerated it. Peak event will require mega-events to change radically, through what we call the three Ds - downsizing, digitalising and dispersing -, if they want to continue to exist.

Corresponding Author

Martin Müller

University of Lausanne, Switzerland

Author #1:

Martin Müller

University of Lausanne, Switzerland

Author #2:

David Gogishvili

University of Lausanne, Switzerland

Author #3:

Sven Daniel Wolfe

University of Lausanne, Switzerland

Author #4:

Christopher Gaffney et al.

Preferred Track

1. Mega-events and mega-projects: trends and demands

Second Preferred Track

9. The Syndrome of Grand Projects: contamination processes between North-South, West-East, Global-Local

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DINÂMIA'CET-Iscte

Centre for Socioeconomic and Territorial Studies

Avenida das Forças Armadas | Edifício ISCTE

Sala D316 1649-026 Lisbon

grandprojects.2021@gmail.com

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