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Urban governance and mega-events in an era of globalisation: A comparison of the London 2012 and Beijing 2008 Olympic Games

Yang, Jen-Shin (2015) Urban governance and mega-events in an era of globalisation: A comparison of the London 2012 and Beijing 2008 Olympic Games. PhD thesis, University of York.

2017 May 12 PhD Thesis (final version) Jen-Shin Yang 103010787.pdf - Examined Thesis (PDF)
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Since the 1980s the hosting of mega-events has been a globalised practice in entrepreneurial urban governance. A spectacle that lasts only weeks is portrayed by event promoters as capable of generating legacies for decades. In addition to stimulating the short-term local economy and job market, accelerating urban landscape transformation and raising a city’s profile are the two strongest claims made by cities when bidding for hosting rights. However, a careful comparison of the London 2012 and Beijing 2008 Olympics shows that only half of the story has been told. The transformation of the urban landscape and place branding campaigns not only are engendered by, but also engender, the delivery of mega-events; through which standardised Games delivery is enabled and so too the smoothness and profitability of the Games. What is the implication of this? Data collected from semi-structured interviews and questionnaire surveys conducted in London and Beijing suggest that the festivity derived from hosting mega-events may be temporary, but the implications are not. Through observing the negotiation in Games-led regeneration/development and place branding, this project finds that the standardisation requirement for delivering the Olympic Games provides a shortcut for the standardisation of urban spaces. Cities tend to be planned in a standardised way to maximise their urban growth, irrespective of their social and political settings. In the negotiations between the Olympic Games as a globalising power and host cities’ localised aspirations, the repercussion is a standardised, undemocratic urban space.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Academic Units: The University of York > Politics (York)
Identification Number/EthosID: uk.bl.ethos.714365
Depositing User: Jen-Shin Yang
Date Deposited: 25 May 2017 09:00
Last Modified: 24 Jul 2018 15:22
URI: http://etheses.whiterose.ac.uk/id/eprint/17247

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