Mega-sporting events help to reveal the complex processes of continuous urban transformation. The Olympic Games have become notable as the leading global sporting event with its exhaustive media coverage, dramatic competition and staged festive atmosphere. Each one of the games is also designed to show off the host city: making visible not only the new infrastructures and sporting venues architecture, but the heritage and cultural imaginary of the host nation. At the same time the Games cannot so easily be insulated from the continuing vitality of the city, as social lives become displaced and urban districts refashioned in line with the new face of the city. Mega events such as the Olympics, provide a powerful optic with which to take stock of the changes affecting cities and the lives people can live within them. The Olympics Games, then provide a great opportunity to investigate these transformations and open-up a dialogue between urban researchers, artists, activists, policy-makers and the wider public.
These processes become more evident when we consider the Olympics over time and examine a series of games. In this symposium, we will investigate the changes accompanying the 2012 London Olympics, the 2016 Rio de Janeiro Olympics and the preparations for the 2020 Tokyo Olympics. The meeting will focus on existing research and interventions concerning the ways that global events have been accompanied by urban transformations and new forms of social (dis)advantage and exclusions, in different urban/nation-state contexts. What does the future hold for existing Olympic Cities? Are there ways of holding mega events which bring genuine benefits to cities and their citizens? How might the promises of ‘legacy’ be realised in more open and democratic ways?
London, Rio, Tokyo Olympics is a three-day event with:
(Day 01) Welcome reception’ Film and documentary screenings; Photography exhibition
(Day 02) Academic presentations in plenary sessions; London Olympic site walking tour
(Day 03) Workshops and Network Sessions
Confirmed Speakers include:
Gabriel de Santis Feltran (UFscar and Centro de Estudos da Metrópole/Brazil); Phil Cohen (Living Maps and University of East London) ; Shunya Yoshimi (University of Tokyo) Yoshitaka Mouri (Tokyo University of the Arts); Paul Watt (Birkbeck, University of London); Rafucko (Brazilian activist-comedian).
Centre for Urban and Community Research; Institute for Creative and Cultural Entrepreneurship; Asia Centre; Goldsmiths, University of London; The University of Tokyo, Interfaculty Initiative in Information Studies; Graduate School of Interdisciplinary Information Studies, Tokyo University of the Arts; Graduate School of Global Arts, Department of Arts Studies and Curatorial Practices.
Participation is free of charge and you can register yourself here
In addition, we also invite participants (who wish to do so) to deliver a presentation or organise a panel session in our Workshop and Network sessions on Day 3