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|Title:||How elite sport helps to foster and maintain a neoliberal culture: The ‘branding’ of Melbourne, Australia.|
|Keywords:||Cultural glue;Urban entrepreneurialism;Sport city;Melbourne;Neoliberal|
|Abstract:||This paper explores the role elite sport has played in the State Government of Victoria’s (Australia) neoliberal agenda of creating an environment conducive to commercial activity. Adopting an urban entrepreneurial approach of selling the ‘city’ as an attractive place for cross-border investment, the state government has strategically invested public funds into major sporting events in Melbourne. Four specific sporting events were examined: i) construction and redevelopments of ‘Melbourne Park’ to host the Australian Open Tennis Championships; ii) hosting the 2006 Commonwealth Games; iii) acquisition of the Australian Formula One Grand Prix and continued political, corporate and media support for the event and; iv) construction of an urban football stadium. Newspaper reports and parliament transcripts between 1984 and 2014 were collected to highlight issues of contest in the ‘sport city’ in conjunction with a thematic analysis of interviews with influential cultural producers of the ‘sport city’ – most notably state premiers, members of parliament, CEOs of public sports trusts and newspaper journalists. Findings illustrate that the Victorian state has successively re-regulated a neoliberal urban entrepreneurial strategy, often preventing dissident groups from resisting neoliberal activities, and in Melbourne, sport operates as ‘cultural glue’ to establish the logic of neoliberalism in an embodied sense.|
|Appears in Collections:||Dept of Life Sciences Research Papers|
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