The Sydney 2000 Olympic and Paralympic Games were declared "the best Games ever". The environment,  seen  as  the  third  pillar  of  Olympism,  was  an  important  part  of  the  Games  bid, planning and implementation. The Sydney 2000 Games were promoted as the Green Games.

This  paper  takes  a  critical  look  at  what  was  involved  in  managing  the  Green  Games.  It  will only briefly review the functional aspects such as building design, and water and energy use. The  focus  will  be  on  the  awareness-raising  and  education  strategies  employed  and  whether improvements  could  be  made  so  that  other  large  scale  events  could  take  on  this  'Green' approach. The public messages delivered through the media and the education system will be explored and the role scientists played in this sporting and media event will be discussed. The Australian  experience  will  be  compared  with  the  Lillehammer  as  far  as  possible.  Finally, conclusions about attitude and practices transformations will be presented.

Research  began  on  this  project  with  the  announcement  that  a  'bid'  would  be  made. Government  documents,  Olympic  Movement  documents,  media  reports  were  collected  and reviewed.  Interviews  with  staff  from  the  Sydney  Organising  Committee  for  the  Olympic Games (SOCOG) and environmental partners were conducted and responses analysed. Finally, my  own  experience  of  both  the  Olympics  and  Paralympics  and  Olympic  Media  Studies students' experiences were drawn upon.

The  framing  questions  for  the  project  were,  What  will  be  the  legacy  of  the  Sydney  2000 Green  Games?  Did  Australians  and  overseas  visitors,  athletes  and  officials  heed  the  well crafted  messages  about  global  environmental  issues  such  as   -  threats  to  biodiversity;  the greenhouse  effect;  ozone  depletion;  air,  water  and  soil  pollution;  and  over-consumption  of resources? OR were people absorbed by the spin and the activities rather than the issues and the principle of ecologically sustainable development?

This paper is based on a University of Western Sydney funded research project
 

 

 



 

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Public Communication of Science and Technology

 

The green games, Sydney 2000 Olympics and Paralympics
Science messages + SPIN methods = commendable outcomes?

Janice Withnall   University of Western Sydney, Australia

The Sydney 2000 Olympic and Paralympic Games were declared "the best Games ever". The environment,  seen  as  the  third  pillar  of  Olympism,  was  an  important  part  of  the  Games  bid, planning and implementation. The Sydney 2000 Games were promoted as the Green Games.

This  paper  takes  a  critical  look  at  what  was  involved  in  managing  the  Green  Games.  It  will only briefly review the functional aspects such as building design, and water and energy use. The  focus  will  be  on  the  awareness-raising  and  education  strategies  employed  and  whether improvements  could  be  made  so  that  other  large  scale  events  could  take  on  this  'Green' approach. The public messages delivered through the media and the education system will be explored and the role scientists played in this sporting and media event will be discussed. The Australian  experience  will  be  compared  with  the  Lillehammer  as  far  as  possible.  Finally, conclusions about attitude and practices transformations will be presented.

Research  began  on  this  project  with  the  announcement  that  a  'bid'  would  be  made. Government  documents,  Olympic  Movement  documents,  media  reports  were  collected  and reviewed.  Interviews  with  staff  from  the  Sydney  Organising  Committee  for  the  Olympic Games (SOCOG) and environmental partners were conducted and responses analysed. Finally, my  own  experience  of  both  the  Olympics  and  Paralympics  and  Olympic  Media  Studies students' experiences were drawn upon.

The  framing  questions  for  the  project  were,  What  will  be  the  legacy  of  the  Sydney  2000 Green  Games?  Did  Australians  and  overseas  visitors,  athletes  and  officials  heed  the  well crafted  messages  about  global  environmental  issues  such  as   -  threats  to  biodiversity;  the greenhouse  effect;  ozone  depletion;  air,  water  and  soil  pollution;  and  over-consumption  of resources? OR were people absorbed by the spin and the activities rather than the issues and the principle of ecologically sustainable development?

This paper is based on a University of Western Sydney funded research project
 

 

 



 

A copy of the full paper has not yet been submitted.

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