COVID-19, sustainability and Olympic Games: which lessons can we learn from Tokyo 2020?



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Formação, Crescimento e Transformação de Sistemas de Negócio, Organizacionais e Sócio-Econômicos

Eduardo Russo, Ariane Roder Figueira, Leonardo José Mataruna-dos-Santos


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Sport, Business and Management, Vol. ahead-of-print, No. ahead-of-print. Abstract Purpose: This paper aims to understand how the sustainability theme has been incorporated into the new Olympic planning guidelines based on analysing the case of Tokyo (2020), which was severely impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. Design/methodology/approach: For this, field research using the case study method was carried out that involved 21 in-depth interviews with experts from different entities affected by the event. Findings: As a result, it was possible to identify that some characteristics already presented in the Tokyo project came to break away from the gigantism observed in the past Olympic editions in an attempt to demonstrate alignment with the new principles brought by the IOC (2020) and 2020 + 5 Agenda that had as one of its main objectives to simplify the Olympics, making the event more sustainable and accessible for future host societies. Originality/value: At the end, some trends for the future of the Olympic Games are also presented in order to guide future studies in the area, as well as help the future host cities and their companies in planning their investments.

Keywords: Olympic games, Tokyo 2020, COVID-19, Mega sporting events, Sustainability.

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