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'Image' leveraging and sports mega-events: Germany and the 2006 FIFA World Cup

Grix, Jonathan (2012) 'Image' leveraging and sports mega-events: Germany and the 2006 FIFA World Cup. Journal of Sport and Tourism, 17 (4). pp. 289-312. ISSN 1477-5085

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Abstract

The broader setting for this research is the increase in willingness of governments of all political hues to stage sports mega-events. The paper starts from the observation that many states have and do instrumentalise sport to promote their country's image or 'brand' and attempt to gain prestige. This paper argues that Germany employed a deliberate leveraging strategy to improve their nation's (poor) image abroad. How did Germany do this? This study focuses on three aspects that were central to Germany's leveraging tactics: a series of long-term, carefully co-ordinated campaigns; the focus on a 'fan-centred' approach to the organisation of the event and the creation of a 'feelgood factor' around the tournament. More broadly, the article seeks to contribute to the nascent literature on leveraging sports mega-events by employing Chalip's 2004 model of leveraging legacies as an organising principle and focusing on strategies to improve a nation's image used by Germany. © 2012 Copyright Taylor and Francis Group, LLC.

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