Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-xviii
  2. London 2012: The Mega-Event in Context

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 25-25
    2. Gavin Poynter
      Pages 27-51
  3. The 2012 Legacy Story: Views from East London

  4. Sporting Chances? The Social and Health Legacies of 2012

  5. From London 2012 to Rio 2016 and Tokyo 2020

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 383-383
    2. Phil Cohen, Paul Watt
      Pages 385-405

About this book


This book brings together a body of new research which looks both backwards and forwards to consider how far the London 2012 Olympic legacy has been delivered and how far it has been a hollow promise. Cohen and Watt consider the lessons that can be learnt from the London experience and aptly apply them other host cities, specifically Rio 2016 and Tokyo 2020. The Olympics are often described as a ‘mega-event’ in a way that assumes the host cities have no other existence outside, before or beyond the contexts imposed by the Games themselves. In terms of regeneration, the London 2012 Olympics promised to trigger a mega-regeneration project that was different to what had come before. This time the mistakes of other large-scale projects like London Docklands and Canary Wharf would be put right: top-down planning would be replaced by civic participation, communication and ‘the local’. This edited collection questions how far the 2012 London legacy really is different. In so doing, it brings fresh evidence, original insights and new perspectives to bear on the post-Olympics debate. A detailed and well-researched study, this book will be of great interest to scholars of urban geography, sociology, urban planning, and sports studies. 


housing olympic games redevelopment house prices gentrification sport urban inequality community East London

Editors and affiliations

  • Phil Cohen
    • 1
  • Paul Watt
    • 2
  1. 1.Centre for East London StudiesUniversity of East LondonLondon, E 16United Kingdom
  2. 2.Geography, Environment and DevelopmentBirkbeck, University of LondonLondonUnited Kingdom

About the editors

Phil Cohen is Visiting Professor at Birkbeck, University of London and Emeritus Professor in Cultural Studies at the University of East London, and co-founder of the Living Maps network.

Paul Watt is Reader in Urban Studies at Birkbeck, University of London, United Kingdom. He co-wrote Understanding Social Inequality (Sage, 2007) with Tim Butler, and co-edited Mobilities and Neighbourhood Belonging in Cities and Suburbs (Palgrave Macmillan, 2014) with Peer Smets. 

Bibliographic information


“London 2012 is full of important information and critical analysis with plenty of ideas for future work. Its bibliographies will be indispensable for students and researchers. The book will be of great value to planners, sociologists, urban geographers and all with a deep concern for London and for ‘Post-Olympic Studies’.” (Hugh Clout, Cercles,, 2017)