Sports mega-events–three sites of contemporary political contestation

John Horne*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

35 Citations (Scopus)


This article discusses the contemporary politics of sports mega-events, involving the Olympic Games and Fédération Internationale de Football Association (FIFA) Men’s Football World Cup Finals as well as other lower ‘order’ sports megas, taking two main forms: the promotional and the protest. There is a politics in, and a politics of, sports mega-events. The former focuses on the internal politics of the organizing bodies, such as the International Olympic Committee and FIFA. This form of politics has been written about elsewhere, and hence, there is no detailed discussion in this article about it. Instead this article offers a brief discussion of the range and number of sports mega-events since 2000, an assessment of the contemporary politics of sports mega-events, a focus on three main sites of political contestation–rights, legacy and labour, and finally, it offers conclusions about research into the politics of sports mega-events.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)328-340
Number of pages13
JournalSport in Society
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2017 Mar 4
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cultural Studies


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