Document Type


Publication Date


Publication Title

College of the Holy Cross, Department of Economics Faculty Research Series


The Olympic Games are a major undertaking that promise both large costs and potentially large benefits to host cities. This paper lays out the potential economic benefits of hosting the Olympics and details how, in the vast majority of cases, these gains are unlikely to cover the costs of hosting the event. The ideas are then applied to the experience of Boston in its ultimately unsuccessful bid for the 2024 Summer Olympics.


Olympics, mega-events, impact analysis, Boston, tourism


19 02


Peer reviewed accepted manuscript.

All papers in the Holy Cross Working Paper Series should be considered draft versions subject to future revision.

The ideas behind this paper were first presented at “Behind the Games: The Effect of the Olympics on Host Cities,” UConn Law School, Hartford, CT, April 2019

Included in

Economics Commons



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