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Olympic Games Bid Process Revamp


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Not sure where to post this news so I decided to start a new topic

IOC mulls revamp of Games bid process
KAROLOS GROHMANN
SOCHI, Russia — Reuters
Published Wednesday, Feb. 05 2014, 4:45 AM EST
Last updated Wednesday, Feb. 05 2014, 4:49 AM EST
From a cheaper bidding process to hosting Games in more than one city, the International Olympic Committee opened the floor to suggestions on Wednesday as it looks to keep the world’s biggest multi-sports event popular and profitable in the years ahead.
The IOC reaps massive profits from the Games but the organisation is alarmed at dwindling numbers of candidates for host cities, rising costs and social opposition to the Olympics.
The Sochi Games, which open on Friday, are the most expensive Olympics ever with a price tag of more than $50 billion but questions are being asked if the huge investment is worth it.
Ratings agency Moody’s said in a report on Wednesday that the Sochi Games were unlikely to provide much of a boost to the Russian economy.
President Vladimir Putin has staked his personal and political prestige on hosting a successful Games and turning the Black Sea resort into a more attractive tourism destination.
Several cities have already pulled out of the race to host the 2022 Winter Games amid concerns about rising costs, while protests in Brazil ahead of this year’s World Cup and the 2016 Rio Olympics have further highlighted the problems associated with hosting mega sports events.
Starting with the Olympic bidding process itself, IOC members said revisions were needed.
“We believe we should do more to support better bid cities in their engagement,” IOC Vice President John Coates said at the start of the organisation’s session in Sochi.
“Are we not asking too much too soon (from bid cities)? Should the bidding procedure be more an invitation of potential bidders rather than a tender for a franchise? The cost of the bids concerns us all.”
REVAMPED GAMES
The discussions are part of the IOC’s Olympic Agenda 2020, launched by President Thomas Bach after his election in September, to revamp the Games.
Members also discussed the feasibility of staging Games in two cities, or even more than one country, and the possibility of subsidising bids that can cost close to $100 million.
Most, however, believed that staging a Games in two different cities would affect the “uniqueness” of the event and have an impact on the overall atmosphere.
Many spoke in favour of reinstating city visits for IOC members, which were banned following the Salt Lake City bribery scandal where members received gifts in return for votes in favour of the American city to host the 2002 Olympics.
Israeli IOC member Alex Gilady said members “could not look themselves in the mirror” voting for a city they did not visit.
Currently, only an appointed evaluation commission is allowed to visit candidate cities on behalf of the IOC.
Discussions also touched on how to ensure candidate cities did not carry hidden risks.
Sochi, which did not have any of the venues ready when it bid for this year’s Games, has been under almost constant criticism since being awarded the Olympics in 2007 over costs, allegations of corruption, and its proximity to the volatile North Caucasus region.
Russia has also faced criticism over its human rights record and a recent anti-gay propaganda law which opponents say curtails the rights of homosexuals in the country.
Several world leaders have decided not to travel to the Black Sea resort, prompting IOC President Bach to say on Tuesday the Sochi Games were a purely sporting event which should not be used by uninvited guests to score political points.
French President Francois Hollande, British Prime Minister David Cameron and German President Joachim Gauck, among others, announced they would not attend the Feb. 7-23 Games without providing a reason.
The United States, which is sending lower-ranking officials than in recent Olympics, has in its delegation to Sochi three openly gay members including former tennis champion Billie Jean King.
The IOC will also discuss raising the number of sports in the Games and whether changes should be made to a seven-year waiting period for their introduction.
Decisions will be taken at an extraordinary session in December.
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After reading the above, here's my two cents:

1.) Bad news for Krakow.

2.) Good news for temporary venues, existing venues and other cost-saving measures. (I hope. Let's see if the IOC finally starts putting their money where their mouth is.)

3.) The cost of the bidding can be reduced simply by shortening the length of the bidding cycle which is currently in the neighborhood of 24 months long. There is absolutely no reason why the campaign needs to last 20 months. This bid timetable sends the message "We expect a monster event and you need every second of this time just to submit a PROPOSAL." Totally wrong-headed. Shorten the bid process to 12 months.

4.) Host city visits should be reinstated.

5.) DO NOT INCREASE THE NUMBER OF SPORTS. (Do you hear yourself, IOC? "Let's save everybody money by making the Games bigger! Yeah! Great idea!"

5.) Already, Sochi cannot be an unqualified win for Putin thanks to the snubs of foreign leaders, the gay rights issue and the perception that Russia is still corrupt and therefore backward.


Oops. Thought I corrected the 24 months before posting, but I didn't. The bid cycle for 2022 is just over 20 months. Still, it's too long.

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But above is all talk. Let's see if they have the cojones to really institute meaningful changes.

And if they are talking about holding costs down -- then they should immediately tell Krakow now...NOT to waste its time, money & effort. But the left side of their mouth is talking about splitting hosting duties between several cities. So why should a bi-national bid be too different???

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But above is all talk. Let's see if they have the cojones to really institute meaningful changes.

And if they are talking about holding costs down -- then they should immediately tell Krakow now...NOT to waste its time, money & effort. But the left side of their mouth is talking about splitting hosting duties between several cities. So why should a bi-national bid be too different???

Well, if you read the article initially they talk about the possibility of splitting the Games, but then it goes on to say "Most, however, believed that staging a Games in two different cities would affect the 'uniqueness' of the event and have an impact on the overall atmosphere." If "most" feel that way about cities, it seems a given they will feel that way about countries.

I agree that the IOC should save bidders time and money by letting the non-starters know up front that they're odds are slim. Of course, this could result in much smaller numbers of bidders, which isn't as conducive to generating the media circus that the IOC so loves. For that reason, I don't think they'll do it. The best hope is for them to simplify and abbreviate the bid process so that the non-starters are at least wasting LESS time and money.

Correction: "their odds are slim." ugh.

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But above is all talk. Let's see if they have the cojones to really institute meaningful changes.

This. Right now it's just talk. Until it turns into actual result, that's all it will remain. It's easy for members within the IOC to open these points for discussion. It's another entirely for them to actually vote to implement them.

I believe they're gonna get serious and perhaps we will see some meaningful changes. But as usual with almost everything else with the IOC, talk is just talk. Let's see if they're an organization that can change course from declarations like "we would love to see a bid from the United States" to "we want to be most cost-conservative"

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Not sure where to post this news so I decided to start a new topic

IOC mulls revamp of Games bid process
KAROLOS GROHMANN
SOCHI, Russia — Reuters
Published Wednesday, Feb. 05 2014, 4:45 AM EST
Last updated Wednesday, Feb. 05 2014, 4:49 AM EST
From a cheaper bidding process to hosting Games in more than one city, the International Olympic Committee opened the floor to suggestions on Wednesday as it looks to keep the world’s biggest multi-sports event popular and profitable in the years ahead.
The IOC reaps massive profits from the Games but the organisation is alarmed at dwindling numbers of candidates for host cities, rising costs and social opposition to the Olympics.
The Sochi Games, which open on Friday, are the most expensive Olympics ever with a price tag of more than $50 billion but questions are being asked if the huge investment is worth it.
Ratings agency Moody’s said in a report on Wednesday that the Sochi Games were unlikely to provide much of a boost to the Russian economy.
President Vladimir Putin has staked his personal and political prestige on hosting a successful Games and turning the Black Sea resort into a more attractive tourism destination.
Several cities have already pulled out of the race to host the 2022 Winter Games amid concerns about rising costs, while protests in Brazil ahead of this year’s World Cup and the 2016 Rio Olympics have further highlighted the problems associated with hosting mega sports events.
Starting with the Olympic bidding process itself, IOC members said revisions were needed.
“We believe we should do more to support better bid cities in their engagement,” IOC Vice President John Coates said at the start of the organisation’s session in Sochi.
“Are we not asking too much too soon (from bid cities)? Should the bidding procedure be more an invitation of potential bidders rather than a tender for a franchise? The cost of the bids concerns us all.”
REVAMPED GAMES
The discussions are part of the IOC’s Olympic Agenda 2020, launched by President Thomas Bach after his election in September, to revamp the Games.
Members also discussed the feasibility of staging Games in two cities, or even more than one country, and the possibility of subsidising bids that can cost close to $100 million.
Most, however, believed that staging a Games in two different cities would affect the “uniqueness” of the event and have an impact on the overall atmosphere.
Many spoke in favour of reinstating city visits for IOC members, which were banned following the Salt Lake City bribery scandal where members received gifts in return for votes in favour of the American city to host the 2002 Olympics.
Israeli IOC member Alex Gilady said members “could not look themselves in the mirror” voting for a city they did not visit.
Currently, only an appointed evaluation commission is allowed to visit candidate cities on behalf of the IOC.
Discussions also touched on how to ensure candidate cities did not carry hidden risks.
Sochi, which did not have any of the venues ready when it bid for this year’s Games, has been under almost constant criticism since being awarded the Olympics in 2007 over costs, allegations of corruption, and its proximity to the volatile North Caucasus region.
Russia has also faced criticism over its human rights record and a recent anti-gay propaganda law which opponents say curtails the rights of homosexuals in the country.
Several world leaders have decided not to travel to the Black Sea resort, prompting IOC President Bach to say on Tuesday the Sochi Games were a purely sporting event which should not be used by uninvited guests to score political points.
French President Francois Hollande, British Prime Minister David Cameron and German President Joachim Gauck, among others, announced they would not attend the Feb. 7-23 Games without providing a reason.
The United States, which is sending lower-ranking officials than in recent Olympics, has in its delegation to Sochi three openly gay members including former tennis champion Billie Jean King.
The IOC will also discuss raising the number of sports in the Games and whether changes should be made to a seven-year waiting period for their introduction.
Decisions will be taken at an extraordinary session in December.

The seven year waiting period is probably about as good as they're going to get; any shorter and the number of potential bids declines sharply, any longer and the threat posed by future political/economic change grows so high that certainty in the stability of a host is reduced.

I do agree, as I've said elsewhere, that we need to partially subsidize the games. Host cities/countries should foot the majority of the bill, but the IOC itself should contribute a small and predictable amount of necessary funds with all participating states contributing a small amount of finances to the games.

They complain that fewer cities and countries capable of hosting are bidding, but this is not necessarily true and is largely a problem with the way the games are prepared and the way hosts are chosen. What is ironic is that we're living in a period that, despite the recent global economic crisis, is characterized be a large number of extremely fast-growing developing economies with the international system itself adjusting from a hegemonic system to a multipolar system. Developing countries have finally surpassed developed countries in accounting for a majority of global gdp and account for over 90% of global economic growth. Major emerging economies are witnessing incredible economic diversification, growth and expanding potentials. Many are consolidating democracies; others are increasingly technocratic autocracies. Regardless, the bipolar and unipolar worlds we've known since WW1 are gone; the US may be the sole 'superpower' but its influence is declining overall and China is quickly becoming a superpower in its own right. The EU, though a supranational organization rather than an actual state, has an economy larger than that of the US when taken as a whole - and the EU is moving ever closer to integrating to the point of being a federal state (the EU's survival, and the survival of the Eurozone, during the recent financial crisis seems to have solidified the EU's future as a successor state to its currently sovereign member states - the Eurozone came close to collapsing and the EU faced fragmentation and dismantlement; instead, a year later we see more countries applying and plans for expansion). India is already home to one of the largest world economies, though stagnant development and uneven policy approaches has kept India from realizing its full potential. However, as China's annual GDP growth drops from the 10%-ish level it's maintained since Deng Xiaoping to 5 - 7% while the country begins transitions from an export-only focus to increasing domestic consumption, there is more room for the much poorer - but democratic - Indian state to make up for some of this loss; cheaper labor costs in India will help make it a true superpower within a few decades (not surprising seeing that its population is set to surpass China's in size within a decade). Russia has embraced a very nationalistic worldview embodied in Putin and on full display in Sochi - it has yet to prove it's economic might in a way that proves it will be a world power during the 21st century, but the sheer amount of natural resources it is home to, the increasingly cheap and easy means of accessing them and its position between Central Asia/China/India and Europe will all help it to be a significant world power for the foreseeable future.

Brazil, hosting the next Summer games as we all know, is another of the major emerging markets that many foreign policy experts believe will be among the global great powers of this century - it faces many problems, but Brazilian democracy is largely consolidated, economic growth is steady and the potential is enormous - plus, Brazil is clearly the most influential country south of the US border as it is. Corruption, income inequality, clientelistic politics, the frontier politics of the Tocantins and Amazon all must be surmounted and this will take time, decades, but Brazil will stand as a great power soon. South Africa is positioned to become the Brazil of Africa - though it likely won't ever reach the economic heights of Brazil, China or Russia due to its smaller population and relative lack of resources. However, as Africa's most influential, economically powerful and militarily advanced state it is in a prime position to capitalize the most on the extraordinary growth characterizing the coastal states of Africa (the interior of Africa seems to be turning into a single region characterized by failed states, warlords, militias, terrorists and criminal organizations). The Chinese, in particular, are investing billions in Africa's coastal states and all (rail) roads lead to Cape Town. South Africa, at the tip of the continent, is in a prime geographic location to serve as the primary financial and trade hub for all of the southern cone's coastal states and Chinese infrastructure projects should link over ten states to the great cities of South Africa within a decade or so.

Central Asia is becoming increasingly influential, though the US is ignoring its rise and Europe seems to only partially recognize its signficance. Outside of Russia, Kazakhstan has more natural resources of value than any country on Earth - the sheer number and variety of resources is unbelievable and it will be increasingly attractive as other sources of these resources dwindle, especially given that Kazakhstan hasn't tapped these resources to a large extent (but it has tapped it enough to witness a 1200 - 1400% growth in GDP since the USSR collapsed. The other large Central Asian states, Uzbekistan and Turkmenistan, also both have large reserves of natural resources - particularly gas and oil. Turkmenistan may have the world's largest untapped gas fields; Uzbekistan has less oil and gas than Kazkahstan or Turkmenistan but it still has significant quantities of both. Unfortunately, Uzbekistan and Turkmenistan are led by particularly cruel, uncaring authoritarian regimes that place little interest in improving the well-being of their citizens (while Kazakhstan is also authoritarian, its goverment has pursued consistent and effective development policies that have actually been aimed, in large part, at improving the well-being of Kazakhstanis - these countries offer a nice contrast between authoritarian regimes that can be 'instrumentally good' for promoting development relative to democracies at the same level of development because those leading the state do have an interest in improving the lives of their people (China would be another example of such a state) compared to those that don't give a damn (as the Uzbekistani and Turkmenistani governments clearly don't). Kyrgyzstan is the most democratic, but very poor - once called the Switzerland of the Altai, it's poverty will keep Bishkek from making a serious bid for the games anytime soon. However, more attention to the region, close relations with Kazakhstan and the inevitable influx of massive amounts of capital into the region as China, India, Russia and the EU increasingly demand energy from the region while oil loses value and the Middle East begins decline. Point is, this is an ignored region in the West but will be the most important 'energy power' region on Earth within a couple decades.

Southeast Asia is experiencing rapid growth too; South Korea is getting ready to host it's second games and its first as a truly, fully developed state (though in 1988 it was very close to developed status); Japan regularly switches places with Germany for 3rd largest global economy and China has the world's largest population and second largest economy - these countries, making up East Asia, have stolen attention from the Southeast for some time but the continued, particularly strong and steady growth of SEAsian economies is going to make more countries and cities in that region global powers with realistic potential to host succesful games. Singapore and Malaysia (Kualu Lumpur) are already capable of hosting; Brunei is as well though it wouldn't be chosen for a multitude of reasons, at least not anytime soon. Taiwan could host as well, but I don't see that happening until it reconciles with the mainland. If Thailand survives the current political turmoil, Bangkok will be a viable host city within 2 decades as will Chiang Mai. Jakarta will be viable before 2050; Manila may reach the required level of capacity by then as well. If Burma proves to be serious about democratization, Yangon and Mandalay could conceivably be serious bidders by 2060.

India, already discussed above, will take time before it can make a serious bid but by 2050 it will likely have several cities capable of hosting - and denying it the games will be hard to do as it will have long-since surpassed China as the world's most populous country and democracy - Mumbai, Chennai, Hyderabad, Kolkata, Bangalore adn Delhi could all be potential hosts within a few decades.

In the Middle East Doha will continue to be a viable contender (I don't think the IOC's 'summer games must be held during the months of the year that are considered summer north of the tropics' rule/argument will last much longer - it eliminates too many potential hosts and it clearly is discriminatory in it's treatment of seasons north of the tropics as being the proper ones to use for timing the games, while ignoring the seasons south of the tropics). Abu Dhabi and Dubai are also almost certain to make bids soon - both are more than capable of hosting the games (although recent attention to Qatar/Doha's use of slave labor in its preparation for the World Cup will make Doha's future bids less enticing - for a time - and also have implications for these two great cities of the UAE).

Istanbul is a probable future host - indeed, one I think we can expect for 2024 or 2028. If Iran continues the reform process it has suggested its beginning, within a couple decades Tehran could bid as well.

North Africa is more troubled; Egypt would have seemed the best option but the revolution and subsequent instability has undermined any potential of an Egyptian games for the next several rounds. Libya clearly can't host. Algeria can't either; Algiers may be decently run and have a sizable middle-class but it simply isn't a major world city like the others I've mentioned. Tunisia... well, Tunis could be a potential host in, say, the 2030s. The fact that Tunisia is the only Arab state to be impacted by the Arab Spring AND actually have a successful democratic revolution will make it a tantalizing choice once the state proves democracy will be maintained and can diversify the economy. Morrocco is the only other North African state likely to be capable of hosting anytime soon - indeed, the most likely as it has 4 cities that could conceivably host (Casablanca, Marakkech, Rabat and Tangiers).

In sub-saharan Africa, I don't think any state/city has a chance anytime soon with the exception of South Africa. Kenya and Ethiopia have shown interest (and I believe Kenya has bid in the past) but neither are anywhere near close enough to being capable of hosting the games, though Nairobi and Addis Ababa could conceivably be ready by 2060 or so. Otherwise, not sure of any other viable cities outside South Africa. Nigeria - the continent's most populous country - is a mess and neither Lagos nor Abuja could host the games in the foreseeable future. Accra or Libreville in Gabon could potentially host in the latter half of the century, I suppose, while Kigali, Rwanda; Dar es Salaam, Tanzania and Gaborone, Botswana could also be potential bidders within 50 years. Africa, though, is still the continent home to the fewest realistic hosts for the next few bids. I do think South Africa will receive the summer games in 2024 or 2028 however (not sure Durban gets it; Cape Town, Pretoria and Johannesburg are all viable options). Otherwise, only Morocco and Tunisia seem to have any potential before, say 2040.

The Americas have many cities that are likely to be capable of making serious bids and hosting the games within the next couple decades. Rio de Janeiro was probably the best choice for the region's first Games, though Rio will have some rough times that may scare the IOC from South America for a few rounds unless it pulls off the Games better than many are expecting. Rio certainly is among the most beautiful cities to ever bid and, simply in terms of scenery and culture, it is a brilliant choice. Sadly, Brazilian politics are rife with corruption and the country has among the worst income inequality in the world with massive slums (favelas) surrounding Rio and Sao Paulo and tremendously powerful organized criminal networks. In some respects, Buenos Aires, Argentina or Santiago, Chile would have been safer choices for South America's first Games but the attraction of Rio - it's particular fame, beauty and international reputation as summer party paradise made likely ensured it would precede games in Argentina or Chile. Sao Paulo and Manaus, Brazil are also cities with the potential to host successful games in the future. Outside of these three states, I'm less sure of the rest of Latin America's states/cities to bid successfully prior to, say, 2040. Montevideo, Uruguay likely could make a serious bid now - I doubt that any South American cities aside from it, Santiago, Buenos Aires and several Brazilian cities could make a successful bid now (i.e. only these could be ready to host if they bid - and won - the 2024 games). Cusco, Peru would be a nice host if it weren't more than 11,000 feet above sea level which will ensure it never hosts the games (a plight that will prohibit Ecuador from ever hosting either, as Quito is over 9000 feet above sea level). Ascuncion, Paraguay could make a realistic bid someday soon, too, but it's hard to see Paraguay receiving the games before Chile, Argentina or Uruguay. In Central America and the Carribbean there are fewer obvious future bidders. Panama City (Panama, not Florida) is currently capable of making a realistic bid. Guatemala City, San Salvador, San Jose and possibly Managua could make legitimate bids within a decade or two as well.

Overall, the point of all this is to say that there are many cities that will be viable hosts in a relatively short time and many who haven't made (serious) bids yet, but which are coming to a point where they will be able to. If the IOC does more to help contribute to future games, by taking on a small portion of the costs and supplying more technical and logistical support, the speed at which these cities move from future possibilities to realistic choices will increase. I am a strong believer in bringing the games to new countries and new cities. This isn't particularly easy for the Winter Games due to the limited number of countries with viable climates and winter-sport cultures (one reason why I've come across as an advocate for Almaty 2022) but it is for the summer games. I see no reason why any city that has hosted the games before should get to host again as long as there are viable alternatives and I believe that countries which have hosted in the past should be majorly disadvantaged in bids for future games so long as options exist in places that never have held the games. As the global economy continues to grow and as the developing countries continue to grow at a speed far greater than that of developed countries, many more cities and states will become legitimate options for hosting the games. Already, I believe there are more options than are often believed. Within 2 decades, those options will grow substantially and if the IOC found a better means of providing assistance to host cities then more cities could realistically bid now.

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I only read the first sentence. I can't bear the blather.

I never said the host city should be named less than seven years in advance. I said the BID PROCESS is too long. The bid process currently lasts over 20 months, which is ridiculous. Shortening it would decrease expenses and enforce focus on the essentials.

Who knows what else you misrepresented. I'm not going to trudge through it.

Start a blog. That's where all these monologues belong. They should not be polluting a conversational forum.

What's that you say? You say no one would read such a blog? Gee. I WONDER WHY NOT. Could it be that the author doesn't know what he's talking about and has an off-putting, verbose, self-important writing style? Never! Perish the thought!

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Future Olympic Hosts must adhere to the Charter, says Norway in Agenda 2020 submission. Full story here - http://www.insidethegames.biz/anoc/755-eoc/1019585-future-olympic-hosts-must-adhere-to-charter-says-norway-in-agenda-2020-submission - Source: Inside the Games.

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Future Olympic hosts must adhere to Charter, says Norway in Agenda 2020 submission

Yes, especially that 38.2 rule that allows Poland to use ski slopes in Slovakia :) Thank you Norway!!

says Norway in Agenda 2020 submission.

Oslo 2022 is obviously still playing that LGBT card. Didn't help to increase the public support for their bid. Just leave it. It's the IOC, they don't care...

The whole article could be summed up to:

Just rule out Russia, China, Azerbaijan, Kazakhstan, Qatar, and probably 70% of the world's countries, even US could be exluded from hosting for some reason. All Olympic Games should be hosted by like 8-10 countries?

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