Academic journal article Monthly Labor Review

Sports Arenas and Economic Development

Academic journal article Monthly Labor Review

Sports Arenas and Economic Development

Article excerpt

Over the past decade or so, local governments have paid something over $6 billion in subsidies for the construction of professional sports facilities, according to research cited by Michael T. Friedman and Daniel S. Mason in the August 2004 Economic Development Quarterly. While such projects are generally justified on the basis of their impact on local job creation and other positive economic impacts, Friedman and Mason contend that a large body of "empirical research has questioned the efficacy of sports facilities as engines for economic development." Thus, the research issue is a better understanding of how development projects are chosen and which specific groups influence these choices in what way.

Friedman and Mason use the organization studies concept of stakeholder analysis to address this issue. Stakeholders are defined in this context as persons or groups that are affected by a particular project or that can affect the success of that project. In stakeholder theory, each stakeholder has at least one to three characteristics--power, legitimacy, and urgency--and that the relative importance of stakeholders is determined by their specific mixes of these attributes. …

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