Co-investigators: Dr Beatriz Garcia and Dr Andy Miah
Research funded by the British Academy
This project has assessed the utility of non-accredited media centres (NAMCs) as a platform for securing appropriate media reporting of cultural matters during the Olympic Games.
The research conducted in Athens 2004 supports earlier findings gathered at the Sydney and Salt Lake City Olympics. The main issue is that a broad range of media utilise the NAMCs, but that the positioning of these centres remains marginal to the Games hosting process.
This project had three main objectives:
– to understand the operational structure and function of the NAMC in contrast to that of established accredited media centres;
– to identify the needs of local cultural groups to secure appropriate media representation during Games time,
– and to understand how journalists and local promoters made sense of the NAMC and how they could better utilise it.
Our findings suggest that Athens offers a good model for future NAMCs. However further work is required to enhance the relationship with journalists and with the organisers of the Games so that stories about the cultural, political and social foundations of an Olympic hosting process gain greater levels of visibility and are not totally overshadowed by sporting competition stories.