Winter Olympics – Balancing Costs and Development Positives

Saree Kayne is passionate about outdoor activities such as skiing and horseback riding and has been show jumping competitively since age 16. Currently a Stanford University doctoral student, Saree Kayne focuses her research on the International Olympic Committee’s structural and cultural attributes, and how they affect the games’ production. In early 2014, she had the opportunity to take a research trip to the Winter Olympic Games in Sochi, Russia.

As reported by CBS in May, some critics speculate that the costs associated with the Sochi games are likely to act as a damper to current bidding for the winter games in 2022. The price tag of $51 billion for an event that is approximately one-third the size of the summer games is seen as exorbitantly high, given that a large percentage of the newly constructed facilities return to high vacancy rates directly following the games. Some critics have noted that current Winter Olympic development costs are more likely to cause bankruptcy, rather than sustained economic gain.