Disorganised host event spaces: Revealing Rio’s fault lines at the 2016 Summer Olympic Games

Mike Duignan, David McGillivray

Research output: Contribution to conferenceAbstractpeer-review


Drawing on Deleuze and Guattari’s (1987) theoretical framing of ‘striated’ and ‘smooth’
spaces and ideas around states of exception, this paper investigates the extent to which
the spatial organisation of Rio 2016 Olympic Games territorialised a number of targeted
event and venue spaces across the host city. The paper unpacks, using on the ground indepth
descriptive analysis, how Rio 2016’s main Games sites and ancillary event zones
were spatially organised. It also explores the variegated implications of the Olympic
Games spatial organisation for Rio’s host communities. Qualitative in its focus, in-depth
insights are shared through the use of narrated observation and photo and video diaries
captured in advance of, and during, the Rio Games. The paper finds that whilst the city
of Rio and associated event spaces became controlled and striated in a variety of ways,
they simultaneously emerged disorganised, somewhat chaotic, but in turn more open,
fluid and ‘democratic’. The authors argue that host community, venue, and Last Mile
spaces offered greater propensity for creative resistance, plurality of voice, and the
affordance of alternative narratives.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - 2017
EventCritical Tourism Studies 2017 Conference - Mallorca, Palma, Spain
Duration: 26 Jun 201729 Jun 2018


ConferenceCritical Tourism Studies 2017 Conference
Abbreviated titleCTS
Internet address


  • Mega-sporting events
  • Event regulation
  • Event spaces
  • Entrepreneurship
  • Micro and small businesses
  • Event security
  • Rio 2016
  • Olympics

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Business, Management and Accounting(all)


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