Speaking at the Sport Accord 2007 conference in Beijing last week, the IOC’s Deputy Executive Director for the Olympic Games, Christophe Dubi, took a look at legacy and how the Olympic Movement, in particular through the process for hosting and staging the Games, encourages long term beneficial impacts in a number of areas. Whether it is sport, the environment, socially or economically, the Games are able to produce lasting benefits to host cities.
This concept of legacy can already be seen taking shape in many of the current Olympic Games Organising Committees (OCOGs) – Beijing, Vancouver and London. For example in Beijing, thanks to much of the environmental work being carried out by the Organising Committee and the local authorities, many more green spaces are being created, drinking water standards have improved and large polluting factories are being moved from the city and new cleaner factories built. These initiatives, which are part of a much bigger programme are already improving people’s quality of life and will continue to provide benefits for many years after the Games are over. The same can be said for Vancouver and London, where sustainability plans are being put in place in order to leave as positive a legacy as possible from the Games.
Legacy is an important topic for the Olympic Movement and cities that wish to host the Games or that have already been elected as host city’s are today able to find information and learn from previous experiences through a number of different Olympic sources, notably the Olympic Charter, the IOC’s candidate city procedure and questionnaire, the IOC’s Agenda 21, the Host City Contract, Technical Manuals, and a wide depth of knowledge contained in the IOC’s Olympic Games Knowledge Management (OGKM) programme. As the IOC continues to work on this topic, it will continue to invest in and develop case studies and other tools that will allow the Olympic Movement to remain at the forefront of this important field.