I'm delighted to be giving a keynote at this @BritishLibrary event on 5th Nov. It's especially nice to focus on Rio 2016, just after the London 2012 Games, and to speak to a broad brief , rather than just one topic. Social change is certainly one thing any host city can take for granted in their hosting process. The challenge is to ensure positive social change happens and this is a much disputed outcome of the Olympics, no matter how many medals a home team wins.

In the mean time, here's the programme:

From London to Rio: Social Change and the Sporting Mega-event




Welcome and Introduction to the Conference Jude England, The British Library


Keynote Lecture Prof. Kenneth Maxwell, Harvard University


Panel: Politics and Security Are the games a means to implement government policies? Will the events become focal points for international and local political conflicts? Do the events serve as a catalyst for developments in cyber security and surveillance?


Dr. Timothy Power, Oxford University

Dr. Jeff Garmany, King’s College London

Gabriel Silvestre, University College London

Chair: TBD


Coffee Break


Panel: Economic Impact What impact do these events have on economic development and growth? What is the impact of these events on employment and labour unions? What is the impact of these events on small business and the informal market? How is the housing stock and housing market effected by such events?


Prof. Jane Wills, Queen Mary, University of London Dr. Mike Raco, University College London Prof. Tom Cannon, University of Liverpool

Chair: TBD

12.30-13.15 Lunch Break


Mid-day key note lecture: Prof. Andy Miah, University of the West of Scotland


Panel: Sustainability: Social and Environmental Will the games improve most people’s quality of life? What kind of long term infrastructure developments will happen? How will renewable energies and design be incorporated into these events? Speakers: Dr. Stephen Essex, Plymouth University

Dr. Russell Seymour, Sustainability Manager for Marylebone Cricket Club

Chair: Dr. Alvaro Comin, King’s College London


Coffee Break


Race, Media and Identity What kind of racial imagery and ideology do the games reproduce/challenge? Are their different impacts of the games along racial and gender lines? What kind of coverage does the media produce about the games and why?

Speakers: Prof. João Costa Vargas, University of Texas, Austin

Prof. Renato Emerson dos Santos, Universidade do Estado do Rio de Janeiro Prof. John Horne, University of Central Lancashire

Chair: Dr. Elizabeth Cooper, The British Library


Education Will the games contribute to public health agendas? Do they further the cause of sports education/participation? Speakers: Paul Docherty, Director UK 2012, British Council

Prof. Steve Cummins, Queen Mary, University of London Luke Downdey and Marigold Ride, Fight for Peace/Luta Pela Paz

Chair: Dr. Madeleine Hatfield, Royal Geographical Society (with IGB)


Closing Remarks Jude England, The British Library