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Global_18

network The Long View  region. Much research has been carried out subsequently on the impact of the Games commonwealth on both Manchester and the surrounding areas. In 2002, Cambridge Policy Consultants identified the following key benefits of hosting the event: ■■ 6,300 jobs were created in the local area. This is equivalent to ten jobs per £1 million of public investment, compared to nine jobs created for every £1 million at other international sporting events ■■ An increase of £22 million in turnover for local companies relating to a mix of stimuli, such as construction contracts through to an increase in visitors to the city ■■ An increase of 300,000 new visitors a year, spending some £18 million within the local economy However, a true test of legacy is whether projects survive the test of time. A report by ECOTECH Research and Consultancy found that of the seven projects supported by the Manchester Legacy Programme, Grevemberg disagrees. He argues that four are still operating; more than 8,000 Glasgow is already seeing a change to its businesses were helped across the region; international image. “It is now seen as a hub 2,637 people were encouraged into voluntary of entertainment, the arts and sport. There work; and more than 3,000 people received is a definite change to the stereotype.” a recognised qualification as a direct However, as Delhi demonstrated, there result of the Games legacy. is also a danger of negative publicity. The Dr Andrew Smith, an academic specialising preparations for the 2010 Commonwealth in sports-related regeneration, has concluded Games in Delhi largely served to remind that while Manchester did achieve a the world about rampant corruption, bureaucratic long-term legacy, it also missed opportunities inefficiency and infrastructural for enhancing sustainability. One of its shortcomings. Delhi’s problems were exacerbated biggest failings, according to Smith, was its as the city’s inability to demonstrate failure to include the community at a strategic any form of cohesion or organisation level. This meant that the real needs was compared with the immaculate of the area were sometimes not understood planning of the Beijing Olympics just two and some of the legacy projects were not years earlier. embedded in local programmes to the extent Despite this, Delhi did manage a successful they could have been. Games. The overall economic impact However, Smith and the ECOTECH researchers was valued at $4.9 billion on India’s GDP also agreed that the Manchester during a period of four years from 2008– Commonwealth Games were noteworthy 12, and it created employment for around in one major way, and that was their positioning 2.5 million people. as an ‘event-themed’ programme, Foreign investment was attracted to Delhi rather than an ‘event-led’ one. This means and India has now become a popular destination it did not rely on the impact of the Games for global companies. Many of the Western themselves to stimulate regeneration, but nations so critical of Delhi’s preparation instead used the events as a stimulus for a for the Games are now involved in trade deals much more diverse range of activities and with India and Delhi’s message to other countries projects. is that it is a ‘world class city’. Much of the success of the Games, wherever So, what can we expect from the Scottish they are held, is measured by the international offering? David Grevemberg is at pains reputation secured as a result of to point out that the Glasgow legacy plan the event. This is a benefit that is difficult to is exactly that – planned. “The framework quantify and there remains a belief among for the legacy is clearly owned by Glasgow critics that the notion of ‘economic benefits’ City Council and the Scottish government. is simply a facade created by politicians to It is unusual for a framework to be legitimise huge spending on these events so clearly laid out. The ambitions are there when, in fact, they are simply enormously and the committee is in place to achieve Sarah Juggins is a freelance journalist expensive public relations exercises. them. Everything that we do is linked to specialising in sports writing, health and fitness 72 l www.global -br ief ing.org second quar ter 2014 global three core strands: legacy, community and investment.” And already Glasgow is seeing change. The latest update from the Scottish government’s legacy assessment found that the use of local authority leisure facilities was up from 2008 and the amount that the sports and recreation sector contributes to the Scottish economy has risen by 15 per cent since 2008 to £508 million. The experience of the previous host city suggests that some of the impact will take longer to be recognised. Participation in sport in India still stands at less than one per cent of the population, although some disciplines, such as running and cycling, have seen an increase since the 2010 Games. However, within the last four years, Indian car giant Tata has introduced sports days to its workforce, in recognition of the power of sport to improve cohesiveness and teamwork among its employees. There has also been a slow, but positive movement in academic circles. Grants derived directly from the Commonwealth Games support the Institute of Physical Educational and Sports Science based at Delhi University. This money has helped fund sports science labs, gymnasiums and physiotherapy equipment. Dr Devinder Kumar Kansal, head of the institute, says: “There was less participation before 2010 and now the people are considering that sports should be for all, maybe for competition, maybe for lifestyle. All these things have been boosted after the Commonwealth Games.” Returning to Glasgow, Grevemberg is convinced that the Games are already having a significant impact on the economy. What excites him to a greater extent is the less tangible impact on the nations of the Commonwealth. “To me, the design of the tartan to be used in the Games is the most powerful symbol. It was designed by 15-year-old Aamir Mehmood, who is Pakistani by birth, but born and raised in Glasgow. Now that highlights the importance of youth and diversity. And the question we should be asking is: How do we use the Games to inspire and excite the citizens of the Commonwealth? “Yes, hosting the Games will have a huge impact on Glasgow, but taking the wider view, the Games are about taking collective responsibility to promote peace, prosperity, equality and community across the Commonwealth.”


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