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Capturing the impacts of major events

How we measure the economic and social impacts of major sporting events

Public funding to support the hosting of major sporting events often requires evidence on the wider impacts that these events can have on individuals and on the communities in which they are staged. 

We have been at the forefront of conducting major events' research for UK Sport and a broader range of public and private sector organisations. Our robust methodology allows event organisers and funders to understand the value of their events by quantifying their economic impact on host communities as well as social impacts such as happiness, civic pride and inspiring grassroots participation. 

While our event portfolio incorporates sporting events primarily, we have applied this approach successfully to the wider events industry including cultural events and festivals.

The challenge

How do you quantify, isolate and attribute economic and social impacts to a specific event?

The method

The eventIMPACTS methodology we devised originally for UK Sport and its national partners is accepted widely as being the gold standard to measure a range of benefits associated with events. We have employed this methodology to assess the impacts of more than 150 events.

The impact

Our eventIMPACTS compliant research has contributed to a change in legislation to allow competitive motorsport on public roads in Britain, enabled infrastructural developments and continued support for major events, and facilitated a strategic alliance between Sport England and UK Sport to lever the sport participation benefits of major events.

SIRG impact reports

The Sport Industry Research Group has a track record of producing impact reports on sporting events. Some further examples are listed below.

  • UCI Road World Championships (2019): Social impact of the event and its funded legacy programme
  • The Open (2010–2019): Economic impact assessment 
  • Solheim Cup (2019): Economic impact assessment of the event
  • Ryder Cup (2014, 2018): Economic impact assessment
  • World/European Championships (2014–2018): Economic and social impacts of 30 UK Sport funded events
  • UCI Cycling World Championships (2023): Forecast of the likely economic impact on Scotland
  • Wimbledon (2006, 2016): Economic impact assessment
  • Henley Royal Regatta (2017): Economic impact assessment
  • London Marathon (2000, 2010, 2015): Economic impact assessment

Funding partners


Ramchandani, G., Millar, R., & Coleman, R. (2019). The perceived influence of sport event spectatorship on subjective wellbeing. Journal of Global Sport Management. 

Ramchandani, G., Coleman, R., & Christy, E. (2019). The sport participation legacy of major events in the UK. Health Promotion International, 34 (1).

Kokolakakis, T., Lera Lopez, F., & Ramchandani, G. (2018). Did London 2012 deliver a sports participation legacy? Sport Management Review. 

Ramchandani, G., Coleman, R., & Bingham, J. (2017). Sport participation behaviours of spectators attending major sports events and event induced attitudinal changes towards sport. International Journal of Event and Festival Management, 8 (2), 121-135.

Ramchandani, G., Davies, L., Coleman, R., Shibli, S., & Bingham, J. (2015). Limited or lasting legacy? : the effect of non-mega sport event attendance on participation. European Sport Management Quarterly, 15 (1), 93-110.

Ramchandani, G., Kokolakakis, T., & Coleman, R. (2014). Factors influencing the inspirational effect of major sports events on audience sport participation behaviour. World Leisure Journal, 56 (3), 220-235.

Davies, L., Coleman, R., & Ramchandani, G. (2013). Evaluating event economic impact : rigour versus reality? International Journal of Event and Festival Management, 4 (1), 31-42.

Ramchandani, G., & Coleman, R. (2012). The inspirational effects of three major sport events. International Journal of Event and Festival Management, 3 (3), 257-271.

Ramchandani, G., & Coleman, R. (2012). Testing the accuracy of event economic impact forecasts. International Journal of Event and Festival Management, 3 (2), 188-200.

About this project

Explore the people, research centres and partner organisations behind this project.

Get in touch

Contact SPARC to discuss facilities, partnerships, doctoral research and more

Contact us

Research team

Girish Ramchandani

Dr Girish Ramchandani

Associate Professor of Sport Management

Girish Ramchandani's profile
Simon Shibli

Professor Simon Shibli

Professor of Sport Management

Simon Shibli's profile
Richard Coleman 118775

Richard Coleman

Principal Research Fellow

Richard Coleman's profile
Robbie Millar 27763

Robbie Millar

Researcher

Robbie Millar's profile

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