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While billions of people around the world enjoy watching the Olympic Games every two years, it is sometimes overlooked just how much work goes in to hosting the Games.

The International Olympic Committee works closely with local organisers for almost a decade to stage an edition of the Olympic Games. Olympic Agenda 2020 has improved the level of service provided to future host cities while reducing costs.

The IOC provides the local organisers with a large financial contribution to host the Games. For the Olympic Games Rio de Janeiro 2016, the IOC will contribute 1.5 billion USD to the operational budget of the Games, which will leave a huge sporting, economic and social legacy.

A phoenix is suspended over the Olympic Cauldron at the Closing ceremony at London 2012

From Candidate to Host City

The life cycle of the Olympic Games begins with the submission of candidacies to host the Games. This is followed by the election of the Host City seven years before the Games are scheduled to be held. From the very start of the procedure, the IOC works closely with the local organisers to ensure their project best matches their long-term sports, economic, social and environmental planning needs.

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Olympic stadium in London


The IOC takes a proactive approach to ensure that sustainability is embedded in all aspects of organising the Olympic Games. Leaving a sustainable and positive legacy for the host city and country is a primary, achievable objective for all organisers of the Olympic Games.

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The Olympic Cauldron is lit during the Opening Ceremony of the London 2012

Olympic Legacy

The foundations of all Olympic projects are now firmly rooted in the concept of legacy: what the event will leave behind long after the 16 days of athletic competition are over. The IOC and local organising committees work together to produce a positive, lasting legacy for the citizens of the host city and country.

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