The Handbook of the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games is the first authoritative and comprehensive account of the world’s greatest sporting and cultural event. It tells the complete story of the 2012 Games from inception, through the successful bidding process and the planning and preparation phase, to delivery, the post-Games period and legacy. Written by a world-class team of international Olympic scholars, the book offers critical analysis of the social, cultural, political, historical, economic and sporting context of the Games. From the political, commercial and structural complexities of organising an event on such a scale, to the sporting action that holds the attention of the world, this book illuminates the key aspects of the 2012 Games, helping us to better understand the vital role that sport and culture play in contemporary global society.

The book is divided into two volumes: Volume Two - Celebrating the Games, examines the period of competition and immediately afterwards, covering key topics such as:

  • London welcomes the world - hospitality and the look of the games
  • Experiencing the games -spectators, tourists, volunteers, shoppers, viewers
  • Media and communications
  • Running the games
  • Creating Olympic celebrities
  • Protesting the games
  • Commerce, retail and consumption
  • Documenting London 2012 in films and books
  • The legacy of the 2012 Games for London, the UK and the Olympic Movement

Richly illustrated with the personal accounts of key stakeholders, from sports administrators and politicians to athletes and spectators, and including essential data and evocative visual material, this book is essential reading for anybody with a personal or professional interest in the Olympic and Paralympic Games, global culture or the development of sport.

chapter 1|15 pages

Researching and Writing about the London Games

An Introduction

part 1|33 pages

Britain welcomes the world

chapter 2|17 pages

Dressing up London

chapter 3|14 pages

Re-Thinking Hospitality

How London welcomed the world to the 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games

part 2|116 pages

Experiencing the Games

chapter 4|18 pages

Volunteering for the Games

chapter 5|13 pages


A temporary organisation within a high-velocity environment

chapter 6|12 pages

Watching the Games

chapter 7|14 pages

Tweeting the Olympic Games

chapter 8|13 pages

Visiting the Games

Spectators, fans and behaviours

chapter 10|13 pages

Spectating the Games

chapter 11|13 pages

Living in the Olympic Zone

part 3|45 pages

Science, technology and Olympic celebrities

chapter 13|11 pages

Shaping Viewer Experiences

The biggest spectacle on television's grandest stage

part 4|39 pages

Seizing the Olympic Platform

chapter 16|12 pages

Protesting the Games

chapter 17|13 pages

Seizing the Olympic Platform

6.6 Million and counting 1

part 5|42 pages

Documenting the Games and their legacies

chapter 18|11 pages

Inspire a Publication

Books, journals, and the 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games

chapter 19|14 pages

Documenting the Games Through Film

Lights, camera, action!

chapter 20|14 pages

London 2012 Legacy Strategy

Did it deliver?

part 6|8 pages


chapter 21|6 pages

London 2012

Beyond everyone's Games?