- 31 Oct 2004
Rogge speaks to assembled past and future Olympic Games hosts
In the presence of Mr. Liu Qi, President of the Beijing Organising Committee for the Olympic Games of the XXIX Olympiad (BOCOG) and Mrs. Gianna Angelopoulos Daskalaki, President of the Athens Organising Committee for the Olympic Games of the XXVIII Olympiad (ATHOC), IOC President Jacques Rogge opened a series of Olympic Games debriefing meetings on Sunday afternoon in Beijing, four years prior to the Olympic Games being held there. Speaking to some 200 delegates representing the organizers of Games past, present and future (Athens 2004, Turin 2006, Beijing 2008, Vancouver 2010) as well as the five Candidate Cities bidding to host the 2012 Olympic Games (Paris, New York, Moscow, London and Madrid), the IOC President began by paying special tribute to Mrs. Angelopoulos-Daskalaki for the wonderful success of this summer's unforgettable dream Games.
Transfering the knowledge
Speaking specifically about the objectives of the debriefing meetings, involving three and a half days of discussion covering all areas of Games planning, preparations and delivery, Rogge said: "We are going to draw upon the experiences of the past and transfer the knowledge so as to ensure we do not replicate any past errors. We have the tool to do that, thanks to the knowledge transfer process we set up just over four years ago, more specifically 'Olympic Games Knowledge Services'. But having the tool is not enough. You also need humility: humility on the part of the organizing committees to realize they do not have all the knowledge and so need to ask for help; and humility on the part of the part of the IOC to recognize that we can also make mistakes. We have that humility."
A good working relationship
The good working relationship that exists between organizing committees and the IOC is, according to Rogge, a reflection of the fact that the IOC's Coordination commission, the group of men and women tasked with advising and overseeing Games planning and preparations, represents the entire Olympic Movement - including athletes, International Sports Federations, National Olympic Committees, and other stakeholders. "It is one team," he said. Rogge continued to stress the role of the coordination commission, saying, "It is not an 'inspection' committee; it is a 'partnership' committee."
No complacency - Looking to the future
Rogge also spoke of the need not to be complacent, despite the success of recent Olympic Games and the financial health of the IOC. "There will be challenges to overcome in the future," he said. "Meetings like this will help us to succeed." The President also raised the need to manage the cost and size of future Games saying: "We are going to continue on making the Games less complicated and less costly." But he warned that recommendations of the Olympic Games Study Commission should not be used as an excuse to produce sub-standard quality infrastructure and services and that decisions on these matters must always be made with the IOC. Regarding the IOC's ongoing study of the sports making up the Olympic Programme, Rogge said that the organization would continue to work to ensure the Programme was 'lively' and 'in-tune' with the future and with the youth of tomorrow. "We are not looking for a revolution," he said, " but for an evolution."
Rogge closed his address with a special word for the five 'magnificent' candidate cities for 2012 saying, "You are entering a crucial period. It will be very difficult for the IOC to make the choice. May I wish you great success in this period which will be very intense for you and in which you will need to prove you are the best choice. I know you will do this whilst respecting the IOC's bidding rules. Good luck!"
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