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Project Period: 

07/2023 – 12/2024

 

Evaluation Study of the UEFA EURO 2024

Welcome to the website of the research project „Evaluation Study of the UEFA EURO 2024“

This project is jointly led by Prof. Dr. Pamela Wicker (Bielefeld University) and Prof. Dr. Christoph Breuer (German Sport University Cologne). Prof. Wicker is the administrative lead. The research project is funded by the German Federal Ministry of the Interior and for Community (BMI). The aim of the project is to evaluate the ecological, economic, and social sustainability of the European Football Championships in Germany (14 June to 14 July 2024). The project period is 18 months (starting July 2023). It is part of a larger portfolio of measures of the German Government in relation to the UEFA EURO 2024.

Here you can find further information about the project, the project team, and results. 

Please contact us if you have any questions about the project.

Picture from Elisa Herold, Prof. Dr. Pamela Wicker and Prof. Dr. Christoph Breuer
© federal institute of sport science

From left to right: Elisa Herold (Project management; Bielefeld Uni and GSU Cologne), Prof. Dr. Pamela Wicker (PI; Bielefeld Uni), Prof. Dr. Christoph Breuer (PI; GSU Cologne)

Project lead (Principal investigators)

Project information

An illustration of the three dimensions of sustainability (ecological, economic and social.

The research project „Evaluation Study of the UEFA EURO 2024“ evaluates the ecological, economic, and social sustainability of the European Football Championships, which are hosted in Germany (14 June to 14 July 2024). During the project different types of data are collected from different stakeholders to evaluate different aspects of sustainability before and after the tournament. 

The topic of sustainability has become increasingly important in society and politics in recent years. The United Nations have formulated 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and the Agenda 2030 for sustainable development. Their goal is to ensure that future generations are not negatively affected by the needs of current generations. The topic of sustainability has also gained importance in the field of sports science. Sport policy and sport organizations have developed strategies for making especially major sport events more sustainable. Examples include the National Strategy for Major Sport Events in Germany (German Federal Ministry of the Interior and for Community [BMI] and German Olympic Sports Confederation [DOSB], 2021) and the Sustainability Strategy of the UEFA (UEFA, 2022), which are also considered in this project. 

From a theoretical perspective, the three dimensions of sustainability (i.e., ecological, economic, and social sustainability) can be considered the ‘magic triangle’ of sustainability. This concept stresses the relationships and interdependencies between the three dimensions. One goal of the project is to conduct a pre-post comparison of the event to assess potential effects of the event in all three sustainability dimensions. To achieve this purpose, comprehensive data are collected and analyzed through the lens of the goals formulated by the event stakeholders. 

The present project helps to increase and better tailor sustainability efforts in sport and provide a basis for making major sport events (more) ecologically, economically, and socially sustainable in the future. The knowledge and implications developed in the project can be used for future sport events. 

At the heart of the evaluation study is a pre-post comparison which analyzes in how far developed sustainability goals ex-ante are achieved ex-post. Given the short project period the focus is on short-term effects. Given the variety of stakeholder policies and sustainability strategies, a first step of the project is to determine the concrete goals and analysis parameters for the three sustainability dimensions. 

The main research question is: How sustainable is the UEFA EURO 2024, in which areas, and for which stakeholders? 

The following sub research questions address the main aspects of the evaluation process: 

  1. Which concrete goals and related analysis parameters can be identified for the three sustainability dimensions based on scientific literature and conversations with event stakeholders?
  2. What is the status quo for the formulated goals and analysis parameters in the three sustainability dimensions before the UEFA EURO 2024?
  3. In how far are the formulated goals in the three sustainability dimensions achieved through hosting the UEFA EURO 2024?

 

Graphic of the UEFA Euro evaluation process

Status Quo and literature: The project starts with a literature search and an analysis of the status quo, which represents a sound basis for the evaluation later in later stages of the project. 

Goal setting: The goals of the event are defined more precisely and are finalized. The analysis parameters for the sustainability goals are established. 

Before (ex-ante): Different types of data from several event stakeholders are collected before the UEFA EURO 2024 to measure the status quo. These data collections ex-ante represent the basis for the pre-post comparison.

During: Date are also collected during the event. These data are mainly gathered to estimate the economic, ecological, and social impact as well as the media impact. 

After (ex-post): Similar to the ex-ante phase, different types of data from several event stakeholders are collected after the UEFA EURO 2024. These data allow a pre-post comparison. 

Evaluation: The evaluation is conducted using a systematic pre-post comparison. The gathered data are analyzed and compared, allowing a comprehensive assessment. The evaluation assess the level of goal achievement in the dimensions ecological, economic, and social sustainability. 

Feedback: The findings of the evaluation are discussed with all stakeholders involved in the project. They can also be used for the organization of future major sport events. 

 

 

Different types of data are collected from several stakeholders during this project: 

Illustration with various data surveys for the UEFA Euro

Population survey: Before and after the UEFA EURO 2024 a representative population survey is conducted to assess several aspects of social, ecological, and economic sustainability. These data allow measuring nationwide effects as well as local effects in the ten host cities. 

Sport club survey: In fall 2023 and after the UEFA EURO 2024, a nationwide and representative sport club survey is conducted to measure effects at the organizational level. The survey gives information about social, economic, and ecological sustainability practices of sport clubs and especially football clubs in Germany. 

Ticket holder survey: After their stadium visit, they are surveyed about several aspects of social, economic, and ecological sustainability. This ex-post survey looks at the stadium visit as well as the total stay in Germany and in the host cities. 

Ex-post climate study: An ex-ante climate study has already been conducted before the  UEFA EURO 2024 (Stahl et al., 2022), which estimated the level of CO2-emissions caused by the event and outlined different scenarios. It also included a portfolio of suggested measures to reduce the level of emissions, which mainly relate to the transport sector. Similar to the ex-ante study, an ex-post study is conducted, which relies on actual data collected in relation to the event. 

Media analysis: The media impact of the event is assessed using a media analysis of the ten host cities of the UEFA EURO 2024. The analysis includes different types of media (e.g. print, online, social media). 

Impact analysis: Apart from sustainability, local impacts of the UEFA EURO 2024 are relevant for the ten host cities which are estimated using a set of impact analyses. These analyses examine the economic, social, and ecological impact of the event in the ten host cities. 

Document analysis: A major issue of major sport events is the financing of the event and especially a cost over-run after the event. The document analysis examines the economic sustainability of event organization stakeholders using a pre-post design. 

Qualitative Interviews: Missing information from the documents as well as explanations and justifications are added in qualitative follow-up interviews with event organization stakeholders. They also follow a pre-post design. 

 

Project team

Principal investigators

  • Prof. Dr. Pamela Wicker

    Administrative and Academic Lead

    Bielefeld University 
    Faculty of Psychology and Sports Science 
    Department of Sports Science
    Chair for Sport and Society
    Universitaetsstr. 25
    33615 Bielefeld
    E-Mail: pamela.wicker@uni-bielefeld.de
    Fon: +49 (0)521 106-12994

  • Prof. Dr. Christoph Breuer

    Academic Lead

    German Sport University Cologne 

    Institute of Sport Economics and Sport Management 

    Am Sportpark Muengersdorf 6
    50933 Cologne
    E-Mail: breuer@dshs-koeln.de
    Fon: +49 (0)221-4982-6095

International recognition

Professor Wicker and Breuer are internationally recognized scholars in their field. In a worldwide ranking of the publication productivity in sport management of about 1,740 scientists, they were ranked 2 (Prof. Wicker) und 6 (Prof. Breuer). The high ranking of their universities is largely due to their productivity: Rank 5 (German Sport University Cologne) and rank 21 (Bielefeld University). These two universities are the only two German universities that made it into the public ranking. A worldwide citation analysis of sport management publications shows that Wicker and Breuer account for 76% of all German citations (Hammerschmidt et al., 2024).

 

Prof. Dr. Pamela Wicker

Professor Wicker is among a few social sports scientists with research expertise in all three dimensions of sustainability. With respect to ecological sustainability, she has conducted several studies examining the CO2-equivalent emissions (carbon footprint) that are produced by traveling and commuting for the purpose of active sport participation (Wicker, 2018, 2019) and sport spectating (e.g. in the context of the German Football Bundesliga; Loewen & Wicker, 2021; Thormann et al., 2022). Members of her chair have studied further dimensions of pro-environmental behavior in sport (Scharfenkamp & Thormann, 2022; Thormann & Wicker, 2021; Wicker & Thormann, 2022) and linked them to health and well-being as aspects of social sustainability (Thormann et al., 2022; Wicker & Thormann, 2022).

In the economic sustainability dimension, she has examined the organizational resources and performance of non-profit sport clubs (Breuer et al., 2012; Wicker & Breuer, 2013) as well as aspects of financial sustainability of sport clubs and sport governing bodies (Wicker & Breuer, 2014; Wicker et al., 2013, 2015). She has also conducted research on the sustainable financing of elite sport (Wicker & Frick, 2021), the willingness-to-pay for sustainable measures in sport clubs (Thormann & Wicker, 2021), and on the monetary value of sport (Orlowski & Wicker, 2019). Her research has also looked at the low economic sustainability of governance and human resource management in football (Galdino et al., 2022).

With regard to social sustainability, Professor Wicker has examined societal effects of elite sport and volunteering (Scharfenkamp et al., 2022; Wicker & Davies, 2021), inclusion of people with disabilities in and through sport (Wicker & Breuer, 2014; Lesch et al., 2022), as well as integration and (gender) diversity (Lesch et al., 2022; Wicker et al., 2022; Wicker & Kerwin, 2022). She has conducted research on active sport participation and volunteering in football in relation to health and well-being as part of projects funded by UEFA (Wicker & Davies, 2021; Downward & Wicker, 2021). In this context, the social return on investment (SROI) in sport has been estimated, providing a link to economic sustainability. Moreover, she has examined the inspirational effects of elite sport and a potential trickle-down effect (Potwarka & Wicker, 2021; Weimar et al., 2015), also in relation to football (Frick & Wicker, 2016; Wicker & Frick, 2016).

Prof. Dr. Christoph Breuer

Professor Breuer has research expertise in economic and social sustainability of sport. Within the dimension of economic sustainability, he has conducted studies on the economic effects of major sport events (e.g. World Equestrian Games; Breuer et al., 2010), mage effects of major sport events (Hallmann et al., 2010; Hallmann & Breuer, 2011) and their effects on behavioral intentions of spectators including their intentions to revisit the event and the destination (Hallmann & Breuer, 2010). Moreover, he has studied the importance of major sport events in Germany from a fiscal perspective (Pawlowski & Breuer, 2012), external effects of national sporting success (Hallmann et al., 2013), economic significance of amateur football (Breuer et al., 2019), the financing of stadiums prior to major sport events in football (Breuer et al., 2011), also in relation to the UEFA EURO 2024 (Breuer & Maas, 2024).

In terms of social sustainability, Professor Breuer has a history of studying the contribution of sport to social welfare in Germany (first study: Rittner & Breuer, 2000). On this basis, he has developed the sport development reports for sport clubs as a key component of the social reporting of sport in Germany. This research includes both the societal relevance of sport clubs and the necessary preconditions (see Breuer, 2007 for a discussion of the theoretical underpinning), but also societal correlates of sport club membership and volunteering in sport clubs (e.g. Breuer & Feiler, 2022). Within this work, separate reports have typically been provided which outline the societal contributions of football (latest report: Breuer et al., 2021b). In his role of main editor of the Fourth German Report for Children and Youth Sports, Professor Breuer has looked at several aspects of social sustainability in and through sport (Breuer et al., 2020). As a former research professor for the German Socio-Economic Panel (GSOEP) at the German Institute for Economic Research (DIW Berlin) he has gained expertise in conceptualizing and measuring social sustainability in population surveys. Moreover, he has looked at transfer effects of the UEFA EURO 2024 (Maas & Breuer, 2024).

Project management

  • Elisa Herold

    Project Management

    Bielefeld University 
    Faculty of Psychology and Sports Science
    Department of Sports Science
    Chair for Sport and Society 

    Universitaetssstr. 25
    33615 Bielefeld
    E-Mail: elisa.herold@uni-bielefeld.de
    Fon: +49 (0)521 106-2007

     

    German Sport University Cologne

    Institute of Sport Economics and Sport Management
    Am Sportpark Muengersdorf 6
    50933 Cologne
    E-Mail: e.herold@dshs-koeln.de
    Fon: +49 (0)221-4982-8732

Results and downloads

Here we provide results of the project that can be downloaded.

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