Fostering an entrepreneurship legacy for deprived communities in Olympic cities

This report investigates the experience of two Olympic host cities to examine if the Olympic Games can act as a driver to foster enterprise and social entrepreneurship.


Social entrepreneurship has evolved globally as an important route to address societal issues through entrepreneurship. Those founding and running social ventures are driven by their social mission, with entrepreneurship providing the means for their sustainability. Can the Olympics act as a driver to foster enterprise and social entrepreneurship?

This report examines research funded thanks to the International Olympic Committee, exploring the experience of two host cities, Rio de Janeiro and London, through the lived experience of 25 individuals in social ventures and surveys and interviews with 100 others working in or supporting entrepreneurship, identifying critical factors which might encourage social entrepreneurship as a strong legacy of the Olympics.

Similarities emerged in their need for skills enhancement and their ‘reach’ in accessing information, advice, finance and physical resources. Engagement was an issue with both groups identifying their capacity gaps in understanding how to lever advantage from wider networks.

Through literature review and primary research, an entrepreneurship legacy framework emerged, likely to support for profit and social enterprise. The Entrepreneurship (4 Es) Legacy Framework was developed with four core stages as follows:

  1. Engage
  2. Enable
  3. Empower
  4. Extend.

To support entrepreneurship, long-term relationships with deprived neighbourhoods are suggested with monitoring and measurement of actions taken during preparation, staging and post Games periods, with public publishing points three, five and ten years after events.




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