Has Britain got sport upside down? Pro Bono Economics annual lecture
Royal Institution, Monday 27th February 2017, registration at 7pm,
Professor Diane Coyle hosts an evening with Simon Kuper, Financial Times columnist and author, at the Royal Institution; Mayfair
Every gold medal won at the Rio Olympics cost the UK an estimated £5.5 million. However, the average UK citizen in 2017 will do less than 30 minutes of exercise each week.
Every fortnight, the government sells off a school playing field to a corporate household name. Meanwhile, childhood obesity and mental illness in teenagers continue to rise with a growing burden on the public purse.
There are a limited number of free tickets for this event. Suggested donation to Pro Bono Economics is minimum £10.
Simon Kuper, author of “Soccernomics” and Financial Times columnist, will look at why investment in British sport has become so polarised. Drawing on Simon’s extensive knowledge of the UK sports industry, the evening is set to ask some challenging questions on the link between sport, public health and the economy in 2017.
- Can we justify spending an estimated £5.5 million on each gold medal won at the Rio Olympics when few kids in the UK have facilities for activities such as judo, fencing or equestrianism anywhere near their homes?
- The sell-off of school playing fields in the Thatcher/Major years did terrible damage to British sport. Instead of obsessing over who will be the next England football manager, let’s spend that energy creating places for people to play sport near their homes. Such a strategy would increase national health, happiness and sense of community, fight crime – and maybe even improve the England football team.
Examining Simon Kuper’s themes further, Professor Diane Coyle (University of Manchester) will host a panel discussion and invite contributions from the audience.
Simon Kuper will be joined on the panel by:
Baroness Tanni Grey-Thompson, Gold medal Paralympian, parliamentarian and television presenter.
Mark Gregory, EY’s Chief Economist for the UK & Ireland; his work has quantified the economic and social impact of sport institutions, including the Rugby World Cup 2015 and English Premier League.
Will Watt, founder of Jump: expertise in policy evaluation, impact analysis and behaviour change in sport and volunteering.
The event will be followed by a drinks and canapés reception.
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