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Governing the Games: high politics, risk and mega-events

Governing the Games: high politics, risk and mega-events
Governing the Games: high politics, risk and mega-events
Prima facie, spectacular public events and large-scale capital projects are an ideal vehicle for ‘high politics’ and the predilection of policy-making elites for grand, iconic and schematic visions that offer high-profile policy successes and historic legacies. Yet the prospective political rewards from such mega-events and projects must be offset against high levels of risk and complexity. Further, such schemes tend to be at odds with the prevailing doctrines and practices of the modern state: in particular its deference to market-based mechanisms and its liking for instruments of calculation and control. Indeed, mega-projects and events often prove uneconomic despite the predictions of forecasters. This review essay considers how the bidding and planning process for the London 2012 Olympic Games demonstrates this tension between high politics, risk and the preferred methods of governing the modern state.
2-14
Jennings, Will
2ab3f11c-eb7f-44c6-9ef2-3180c1a954f7
Jennings, Will
2ab3f11c-eb7f-44c6-9ef2-3180c1a954f7

Jennings, Will (2013) Governing the Games: high politics, risk and mega-events. Political Studies Review, 11 (1), 2-14. (doi:10.1111/1478-9302.12002).

Record type: Article

Abstract

Prima facie, spectacular public events and large-scale capital projects are an ideal vehicle for ‘high politics’ and the predilection of policy-making elites for grand, iconic and schematic visions that offer high-profile policy successes and historic legacies. Yet the prospective political rewards from such mega-events and projects must be offset against high levels of risk and complexity. Further, such schemes tend to be at odds with the prevailing doctrines and practices of the modern state: in particular its deference to market-based mechanisms and its liking for instruments of calculation and control. Indeed, mega-projects and events often prove uneconomic despite the predictions of forecasters. This review essay considers how the bidding and planning process for the London 2012 Olympic Games demonstrates this tension between high politics, risk and the preferred methods of governing the modern state.

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More information

Published date: 10 January 2013
Additional Information: Funded by ESRC: Going for Gold: The Olympics (RES-063-27-0205)
Organisations: Politics & International Relations

Identifiers

Local EPrints ID: 343614
URI: http://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/343614
PURE UUID: ad9d8816-a7ab-4083-a2f5-2a4bf8c376e7
ORCID for Will Jennings: ORCID iD orcid.org/0000-0001-9007-8896

Catalogue record

Date deposited: 09 Oct 2012 11:13
Last modified: 10 Jan 2022 02:58

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