EAP kicks off new research series EAP Insights with exploration into labour exploitation in mega-sports event delivery

EAP is delighted to launch EAP Insights: a new research series which draws on EAP knowledge and expertise on issues spanning social equity and inclusive growth, infrastructure governance, and sustainable and resilient infrastructure. Today, as the world would have been sitting down to watch the opening ceremony of the Tokyo Olympics 2020, we launch EAP Insights with Changing the Game: A critical analysis of labour exploitation in Mega Sport Event infrastructure projects.

The Changing the Game series will dive into key issues in Mega Sport Events (MSEs), including corruption and integrity, and social accountability. Today, we’ve chosen to mark the Tokyo Olympics with an exploration into an issue which rears its head during the construction of MSEs time and time again: the labour exploitation of construction workers. In this blog, we dive into why this issue must remain front and centre in the sporting world. Changing the game: A critical analysis of labour exploitation in Mega Sport Event infrastructure projects outlines the current state of play for construction workers on MSE sites, going on to offer innovative recommendations to the tackle problems of unsustainable jobs, wage delay and critical health and safety concerns.

In our next instalment of Changing the Game, we will turn to themes of corruption and a lack of social accountability in the delivery of MSE infrastructure. Throughout the series we will develop policy recommendations which can offer guidance to stakeholders involved in these events. We will draw on the lessons from the past to explore the challenges of the present, in order to re-evaluate the role and impact of MSEs.

As former UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon said:

”As we look ahead, mega sport events can and should contribute to realizing the newly adopted Sustainable Development Goals. This will not happen on its own. Ample experience has shown that the benefits of mega sport events have not always been long-lasting, sustainable or widely shared. It is therefore crucially important that we learn the lessons of this history.”

Read our blog outlining today’s first paper
Read the opening remarks to EAP Insights’ Changing the Game series
Read the first paper: Changing the Game: A critical analysis of Mega Sport Events