Assistant Professor, Educational Studies

Associate Member, School of Human Kinetics

Associate Member, School of Community and Regional Planning

University of British Columbia

2125 Main Mall., Vancouver 

British Columbia 





Faculty of Education

Research Interests/Fields of Research Related to the Games 

Sport Mega-Event Impacts, Sustainability Education, Green Jobs, Canadian Model of Planned Legacies for Sport Mega-Events

Additional Information  

Current Research Projects 

Olympic Games Impact (OGI) Project

2008 - 2013

Funded by: VANOC/COC

Amount: 600k

Lead: Rob VanWynsberghe

The Olympic Games Impact (OGI) program has been developed by the International Olympic Committee (IOC) to objectively measure and report on the environmental, economic and social effects of the Olympic Games. The purposes of OGI are to advance the sustainability of the Games, promote positive legacies by Games’ hosts and create a knowledge base for future hosts. Standardized data using 126 prescribed indicators will be collected before, during and after the Games. Each indicator will be analyzed, ultimately for the purposes of assigning attribution.


Under the host city contract, VANOC is required by the IOC to produce OGI measurements. The OGI study covers a period of 12 years and involves a series of four reports. The first report served as a baseline, focusing on the context indicators and data for the reference year that is two years prior to the host city election (2001 for VANOC). The second report has been submitted to VANOC and it includes data trends from approximately 2001 through 2007. The third report will be issued approximately 6 months after the 2010 Games and will include both context and event indicators. The fourth report will be issued in 2013 and is intended to present trends over the 12-year period, including legacy-type impacts that may occur after the Games.

Community-Based Coalitions & Mega-Events: A Case Study of the Vancouver 2010 Olympics as a Healthy Communities Initiative

Dates: 2003-2007

Funded by: SSHRC

Amount: 109k

In July 2003, the IOC announced its decision to grant the 2010 Olympics to Vancouver. We propose to conduct a detailed analysis of the activities, networks, and contributions of one of the prominent groups at the centre of Vancouver’s bid—an alliance known as the Impacts of Olympics on Community Coalition (IOCC).  The objectives of the present research are I) To conduct a literature review of the factors influencing participation in community-based coalitions (CBCs), specifically in relation to mega-events such as the Olympic Games; ii) To study the short-term outputs and intermediate-term impacts, of community-engagement processes on IOCC-related individuals, organizations and partners; iii) To study how the IOCC mobilizes limited resources and institutional networks in attempts to understand and monitor large, well-funded, and inherently mobile mega-events; iv) To create a model for how mega-events can engender a healthy communities framework; and v) To identify strategic suggestions on engendering/sustaining healthy communities around mega-events.

Three papers have been published from this research and a fourth has been submitted  


Peer Reviewed Articles

VanWynsberghe, Robert, Brenda Kwan and Nicolien Van Luijk. Community capacity and the 2010 Winter Olympic Games. Sport and Society.


VanWynsberghe, Robert, Bjoern Surborg and Elvin Wyly. 2011 Neo-liberalism, social inclusion, and mega-events: the Case of 2010. Submitted to Urban Affairs Review.


Surborg, Bjoern, Robert VanWynsberghe, and Elvin Wyly. 2008. Mapping the Olympic growth machine: Transnational Urbanism and the Growth Machine Diaspora. City: analysis of urban trends, culture, theory, policy, action.


Holden, Meg, Julia MacKenzie, and Robert VanWynsberghe. 2008. Vancouver’s promise of the world’s first sustainable Olympic Games. Environment and Planning C: Government and Policy, 26(5): 882-905.

Research Reports


VanWynsberghe, Robert (Lead) and the Olympic Games Impact Research Group. 2011 Olympic Games Impact Study – Games-Time Report


VanWynsberghe, Robert (Lead) and the Olympic Games Impact Research Group. 2009. Olympic Games Impact Study – Pre-Games Results Report.


VanWynsberghe, Robert (Lead) and the Olympic Games Impact Research Group. Olympic Games Impact Study – Technical Report.


Other Writing


I wrote an article for the Social Planning and Research Council on Sustainable Mega-Events and co-wrote an article for Olympic Review on the Olympic Games Impact Project