Recurring major sport events: Residents' perceptions of the social impacts of the Standard Chartered Hong Kong Marathon

  • CHEN, Kuan-chou (PI)

    Project: Research project

    Project Details


    Major sport events have increased in importance for host communities as they become critical platforms for image enhancement and reputation of the host community (Gelan, 2003; Smith, 2006). Destination image enhancement could be valued by the local people who observe how a sport event can transform their city (Kaplanidou et al, 2013). Studies have examined how sport events can improve the quality of life of local people (Kaplanidou, 2012). Moreover, sporting events have been reported to generate numerous intangible benefits to host cities, such as increasing sense of community, national or civic pride, cultural identity, sport participation, and quality of life (e.g., Crombie, 2011; Freeman, 2012; Garcia, 2004). However, these effects may have been overemphasized, as insufficient empirical evidence was found to illustrate exactly how sporting events influence the quality of life of local residents.

    The Standard Chartered Hong Kong Marathon (SCHKM) has become the largest participatory sporting event in Hong Kong with 73,000 runners in 2015. It has been recognized as a “M” Mark event by the Major Sports Events Committee (MSEC) for 11 years consecutively, suggesting its unique role and significant impact to the life of local people. It is crucial to evaluate whether the investment in such an event can create a fertile environment for sustainable positive impacts for Hong Kong residents.

    The current proposal aims to examine local residents’ perceptions of the event’s impacts over time and how these impacts influence residents’ quality of life and the intention to participate in physical activities. Specifically, through a longitudinal design, the study aims to explore whether the SCHKM can gradually promote a sporting culture and improve the quality of life in the local community. A theoretical model that specifies relationships among eight variables is proposed. Instruments for measuring these constructs will be revised from literature and re-validated through a pilot study. To test the model and to examine effects over time, a total of eight data collections will be conducted before, during and after (3 and 6 months) the event between the year of 2016 and 2018. The unique design of the current proposal that employ a longitudinal method and include sample from different population groups (i.e., participants, spectator and non-participants) would allow us to better understand the event impacts on different populations and the interactions among the proposed variables overtime. Comparison of findings in this project to similar studies conducted in other regions will be done and that would allow us to examine validity and generalizability of the proposed model. Therefore, the findings are expected to make significant contributions to the knowledge in the social legacy of recurring major sporting events for host communities.
    Effective start/end date1/10/1630/09/18


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