2010 Winter Olympic Games
The start of chapter 13 on page 257 in our text begins with a closer look at the Vancouver-Whistler Olympic bid now typically called the Vancouver Olympics. This bit of text was only meant to give a very brief summer of the events that went into deciding how Vancouver was chosen to host the games. According to the text, this bid was backed by 70 public and private organizations putting up the 34 million dollars to complete the bid. This summary also talks about how the City of Vancouver did a public vote to see if residents supported the city making a costly bid to host the Winter Olympic Games. The text also states that the city's residents approved the bid with 64 percent of voters voting in favor of continuing the bid. Vancouver and two other cities being consider, then hosted delegates from the International Olympic Committee (IOC) to help sell their city as being the correct choice for these games.
This whole situation is full of various groups making strategic alliances to accomplish their own specific set of goals. The Vancouver-Whistler 2010 Bid Corporation is clearly a strategic alliance. This alliance was created with the idea of bringing the games to the Vancouver area. One of this alliance's main goals was to persuade the IOC to vote in favor of Vancouver. According to the text on page 258 the IOC voters have created a, "Voting allegiance (members are known to vote in cliques)." The situation has one strategic alliance, the Vancouver-Whistler 2010 Bid Corporation, trying to persuade another strategic alliance, the IOC voters, to vote in one particular way. I find in fascinating that despite the amount of formalization in the Olympic bid process that the process basically comes down to a couple of strategic alliances all vying for a very limited number of votes, and even those voters rely on alliances (cliques) to help determine how they will vote.
According to http://www.vancouver2010.com/ Just before the Olympic games where awarded to Vancouver the Vancouver-Whistler 2010 Bid Corporation was dissolved and was evolved into the Vancouver 2010 Bid Corporation, which is another strategic alliance to complete the 2010 Olympic Bid. Upon the awarding of the games this alliance was charged with organizing the building venues and other preparations for the games.
With all these strategic alliances trying to persuade each other and the very lucrative nature of the games, it is not a surprise to me that this process has at times run amok. As an example, look at the bribery allegations that some individuals faced after the Salt Lake City Winter Olympics. All these strategic alliances make it to simple for unethical actions to be hidden from the general public. Clearly I have only scratched the surface on Olympic strategic alliances, but it is my opinion that the IOC and its related alliances need to be held more accountable.
1. What is your opinion of how the IOC voting works? Do you have a suggestion on how to prevent voting cliques?
2. Do you know of any other sport organizations that work in a similar manner? How could they improve their process?