Advanced Search
MyIDEAS: Login to save this article or follow this journal

On the determinants of sporting success – A note on the Olympic Games


Author Info

  • Eike Emrich

    (Saarland University)

  • Markus Klein

    (Saarland University)

  • Werner Pitsch

    (Saarland University)

  • Christian Pierdzioch



We analyzed whether, in democratic open societies, economic and demographic conditions allow sporting success at the aggregate level to be predicted. Theoretical considerations led to the hypothesis that the population size and gross domestic product (GDP) per capita should be important determinants of sporting success. Using regression analysis, we analyzed the influence of population size and GDP per capita on sporting success in Olympic Summer and Winter Games (1992 – 2010). Regarding the Olympic summer games, we found that the most powerful predictor is population size. In contrast, GDP per capita seems to play an important role as a predictor of sporting success with respect to the Olympic winter games.

Download Info

If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.
File URL:
Download Restriction: no

Bibliographic Info

Article provided by AccessEcon in its journal Economics Bulletin.

Volume (Year): 32 (2012)
Issue (Month): 3 ()
Pages: 1890-1901

as in new window
Handle: RePEc:ebl:ecbull:eb-11-00722

Contact details of provider:

Related research

Keywords: Olympic Games; sporting success; population size; GDP per capita; political economy;

Find related papers by JEL classification:


References listed on IDEAS
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
as in new window
  1. Dawson, Peter & Dobson, Stephen & Gerrard, Bill, 2000. "Estimating Coaching Efficiency in Professional Team Sports: Evidence from English Association Football," Scottish Journal of Political Economy, Scottish Economic Society, Scottish Economic Society, vol. 47(4), pages 399-421, September.
  2. Pedro Garcia-del-Barrio & Stefan Szymanski, 2006. "Goal! Profit maximization and win maximization in football leagues," Working Papers, International Association of Sports Economists;North American Association of Sports Economists 0621, International Association of Sports Economists;North American Association of Sports Economists.
  3. Mark Baimbridge, 1998. "Outcome uncertainty in sporting competition: the Olympic Games 1896-1996," Applied Economics Letters, Taylor & Francis Journals, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 5(3), pages 161-164.
  4. Dobson, Stephen & Goddard, John, 2010. "Optimizing strategic behaviour in a dynamic setting in professional team sports," European Journal of Operational Research, Elsevier, Elsevier, vol. 205(3), pages 661-669, September.
Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)


Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.
as in new window

Cited by:
  1. Christian Pierdzioch & Eike Emrich, 2013. "A Note on Corruption and National Olympic Success," Atlantic Economic Journal, International Atlantic Economic Society, International Atlantic Economic Society, vol. 41(4), pages 405-411, December.


This item is not listed on Wikipedia, on a reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.


Access and download statistics


When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:ebl:ecbull:eb-11-00722. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (John P. Conley).

If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.

If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.

If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.