• British team set to benefit from ‘home town’ effect
• Economic size matters in medal tally – but David can still beat Goliath
• US and China to renew their top-of-the-table tussle in 2012
Singapore, 14 June 2012 - Home advantage could once again play a part in how the Olympic medals are shared in August; but the superpowers of the US, China and Russia are again set to battle it out at the top of the Olympic Games medals table in London in August, according to a new analysis by economists at PwC.
This is the fourth time that PwC has published an analysis of how medal performance at the Olympic Games can be linked to such factors as past Olympic performance, economics and state support for sport. This paper updates these estimates to allow for actual results in Beijing 2008.
The following economic and political factors were found to be statistically significant in explaining the number of medals won by each country at previous Olympic Games before allowing for past performance (which subsumes some of these factors as explained in the paper):
“In general, the number of medals won increases with the population and economic wealth of the country, but less than proportionately,” says the report’s author, PwC’s UK Chief Economist, John Hawksworth. “David can sometimes beat Goliath in the Olympic arena, although superpowers like the US, China and Russia continue to dominate the top of the medals table.”
“In Singapore, sport over the last decade has been getting stronger and stronger. With top results coming from table tennis through to swimming, and increased investment in facilities, and greater participation rates in sport, ultimately it is a matter of when, not if, Singapore will get its next medal,” commented Mark Jansen, Financial Services Practice Partner, PwC LLP Singapore.
In the extract below, our model estimates the top 10 medal-winning countries in London compared to Beijing 2008 – for the full table of 30 countries see later in the release.
Some of the more interesting conclusions to be drawn from the PwC model are:
Notes to Editor:
1. Model estimates of London 2012 Olympics medal totals as compared to Beijing 2008 results
2. The information in this press release is drawn from the full study produced by the UK firm of PwC entitled Economic Briefing Paper: Modelling Olympic performance. This paper updates similar studies published at around the time of the 2000, 2004 and 2008 Olympics.