Brisbane is in the grip of Olympic fever as the 10-year countdown to the 2032 Games officially kicks off today.
Griffith University Director of Brisbane 2032 Engagement Dr Caroline Riot said all eyes will be on the River City as we gear up for the 2032 Olympic and Paralympic Games.
“This is a great opportunity for us as a university, but also as a city and nation to understand why the Games and sport matters,” Dr Riot said.
“Sports matters because of the benefits it generates including jobs, equipment and apparel manufacturing, sales and exports alongside additional health, social, cultural, and environmental impacts.
“In Australia alone, the sports sector generates approximately three per cent of national GDP, providing an estimated $83 billion in combined economic, health and educational benefits each year.
“Imagine the benefits the Olympic and Paralympic Games will bring to Brisbane and Queensland not only in the lead up and during the event, but also the legacy it will leave.”
The Games will also provide a platform to use sport as the accelerant to transform Queensland and the region, and address critical issues including responsible leadership, human rights and sports integrity, climate action, sustainable procurement, diversity, enhanced mobility and accessibility, child safety and protection, and sustainable tourism.
Dr Riot said the social, economic and environmental legacies of Brisbane 2032 are anticipated to accelerate long-term state-wide and regional priorities.
“The Games will provide an opportunity to use sport diplomacy to engage with our international community,” she said.
“By hosting international training camps and supporting sport-for-development initiatives, Queensland can capitalise on its leadership of sport administration, diplomacy and development internationally.
“For example, to address and reduce inequality in international sport, the GAPS program provides both para and able-bodied athletes and coaches from Pacific Island nations access to unprecedented support in the lead up to major international and multi-sport events such as the Gold Coast 2018 and Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games.”
Importantly, the Games will provide a long-lasting and sustainable legacy for Brisbane and generate critical conversations to deliver action plans that significantly contribute to the health and social wellbeing of Queenslanders.
It will create positive change at an individual, societal and global level and will see sport participation potentially accelerate progress towards equity, inclusion and diversity.
Sport matters, and if its value is well harnessed, then it can create benefits for all.