I often wonder why countries/cities decide to host the olympics...
More importantly why do cities that are extremely well know decide to host the olympics?
The rationale happens to be that the hosting of the Olympics will provide economic stimulus and spur growth for the region where it is being hosted. Well, that may be true if one of two conditions are met:
1. The games are conducted in a city that is not very well known across the world. In such a scenario there is an intense focus created on the city, which did not exist earlier before the games.The names of Olympic cities are generally repeatedly talked about in press and news and get very well internalised in the minds of people all over the world. It can be expected that since the city was not known well earlier, like in the case of Beijing, the investment and new infrastructure will be used by tourism and the roll-on business generated in the future.
2. The other case where the Olympics can be held is if the city is using its existing infrastructure to host the games. In the case of an established city like London or Paris, an event is not going to generate any further mileage in terms of tourism. These are very well known cities and international tourists are not going to suddenly want to flood the city because an event was held. To the contrary generating new infrastructure adds a huge burden to the city and additional business that dont find use after the games. Athens is a shining example of what happens when a well known city splurges on an event that is not going to bring additional tourist flow in the future.
In my opinion London too will have an Olympic graveyard, now that the games are over.