Gold Without the Games: Analyzing Unsuccessful Olympic Bids as Policy Windows

Urban Planning Thesis

Lucy E. M. Robson

Robert Beauregard, advisor

Contemporary scholarship on the Olympic Games has turned to consider the negative long-term effects associated with hosting the Games, but has not looked at unsuccessful Olympic bids. Since bidding for the Games is expensive and time-consuming, cities will only bid if it can be shown to provide positive outcomes. This thesis responded to the question “Did the unsuccessful Olympic bids of Toronto 2008, New York City 2012 and Chicago 2016 act as policy windows for public policy or development projects?”  It analyzed the three bids, determined their success or failure as policy windows and created recommendations for future bid projects.