Imaging, tourism and sports event fever
Image is a key concept of the late twentieth century. Whether one is restructuring, reimaging, deconstructing, reconstructing, promoting, advertising, or just being a dedicated follower of fashion, the role of image is highly important. Sports, tourism and urban development are three areas of human endeavour in which the image has assumed vital importance. With all three we are concerned with issues of commodification, identity and the development of products to be sold in the marketplace. All three are also intimately interrelated. This chapter will be examining the nature of these relationships and the implications for urban regeneration, communities and the hosting of sports events, with special reference to the hosting of large scale sports events such as the Olympic Games, especially the Sydney 2000 Games. However, the chapter will note that while mega sports events may be glamorous to cities and spectators, their hosting may not come without a price.