Nouveauté

Volunteers’ collective memory as a potential legacy of the Youth Olympic Games / Yan Wang

Wang, Yan

Edité par Vrijie Universiteit Brussel. Bruxelles - 2019

Recent host cities treat the Games as a leveraging resource in realising long-term legacies. This relates, for example, to acclaimed benefits for host cities and nations via the soft infrastructure of a volunteer pool and volunteers’ personal development. Consequently, there is an increasing demand for research that demonstrates the actual long-term impact of Olympic volunteering experiences. To address this research gap, memory has been included as a construct to better understand the impact arising from volunteering at the Olympic Games. Considering the Youth Olympic Games’ (YOG) youth-centred approach, the present study explored the implications of young volunteers' collective memory as a potential event legacy and its significance for behaviour change in the post-event period (e.g., increased interest in the Olympic Movement, volunteering and sport participation). Quantitative and qualitative data were collected using online surveys and face-to-face focus groups with volunteers who have been involved with the 2010 or 2014 editions of the YOG. Results revealed that volunteers’ memories of the YOG remain and are mostly of a positive tone. The memory was categorised into four themes (i.e., the volunteer journey, perception of YOG volunteering, negative memory and the place of memory). The quantitative and qualitative data supported implications on personal development and behaviour change. The findings of this study have a number of relevant implications both for academic and practical purposes.

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