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Building on changes guided by Olympic Agenda 2020, the International Olympic Committee launched a new Candidature Process for the Olympic Winter Games 2026. This process is tailored to the unique context and needs of each candidate and is shaped around two main stages. This approach features a deeper partnership between the IOC and the Interested Cities and National Olympic Committees, while aiming at significant budget reductions. Supporting Documentation for the Candidature Process 2026 has now been published including the Candidature Process, the Candidature Questionnaire, Olympic Winter Games in Numbers and Delivering Success: Engagement, Legacy and Vision.
The IOC’s adoption of Olympic Agenda 2020 in late 2014 brought an entirely new philosophy and approach to the selection of Olympic Host Cities. The changes from Olympic Agenda 2020 shaped the process as an invitation for Cities to present projects that best match their long-term sports, economic, social and environmental development plans.
Cities were given new flexibility to achieve these goals, and the IOC also took steps to reduce costs for Cities. Although the Candidature Process Olympic Games 2024 was the first to receive the full benefits of Olympic Agenda 2020 from start to finish, it also had a positive impact on earlier candidatures and Games Organising Committees. For example, the new collaborative approach and increased flexibility helped identify USD 2.2 billion in savings in capital investments for the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020.
This positive impact of Olympic Agenda 2020 prompted the IOC to consider further initiatives. In 2016, the IOC established the Olympic Winter Games Strategic Review Working Group to seek ways to enhance the value proposition of the Olympic Winter Games and to make them more sustainable and less impactful in financial, operational and environmental terms.
Following the publication of the Working Group’s recommendations, the IOC created an IOC Vice Presidents’ Working Group to establish the Candidature Process for 2026 with a special focus on reducing costs, simplifying procedures and providing more support.
A further initiative to introduce greater flexibility to reduce average Games expenditure is Games Management 2020. It aims to facilitate, optimise and simplify Games organisation and delivery. The desired outcomes are balanced OCOG budgets as well as closer alignment with Host Cities’ long-term development plans and reductions in Games-related capital investment. Key measures of Games Management 2020 include:
• Better supporting cities to deliver the Games
• Reducing Games-related costs
• Enhancing Games Governance