The 'Summer of Discontent': Exclusion and Communal Resistance at the London 2012 Olympics

Mike Duignan, Ilaria Pappalepore, Sally Everett

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

21 Citations (Scopus)
16 Downloads (Pure)


London 2012 promised local small businesses access to lucrative
Olympic event-tourism and visitor trading opportunities. However, as
urban spaces were transformed to stage live Games, many local
stakeholders found themselves locked out. We focus on one 'host'
community, Central Greenwich, who emerged negatively impacted by such
conditions. 43 in-depth interviews and secondary evidence reveal that
this was a community determined to resist. Few papers have extended the
concept of resistance to the context of mega-events so we examine why
communities resisted, and how physical tactics and creative resistance
were deployed. Although efforts afforded some access for local businesses
- they proved too little, too late. We develop and present a 'tactics for
resistance' approach, a series of 'hard' and 'soft' tactics businesses
could use to encourage proactive, as opposed to reactive, communal
resistance required to protect local interests and afford access to
opportunities generated by temporary mega-event visitor economies
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)355-367
Number of pages13
JournalTourism Management
Early online date15 Sep 2018
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2019

Bibliographical note

NOTICE: this is the author’s version of a work that was accepted for publication in Tourism Management. Changes resulting from the publishing process, such as peer review, editing, corrections, structural formatting, and other quality control mechanisms may not be reflected in this document. Changes may have been made to this work since it was submitted for publication. A definitive version was subsequently published in Tourism Management, vol.70, 2019 DOI: 10.1016/j.tourman.2018.08.029

© 2017, Elsevier. Licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International


  • Communal resistance
  • Exclusion
  • Hard and soft tactics
  • Host community
  • London 2012
  • Mega-event
  • Olympic tourism
  • Small businesses

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Development
  • Transportation
  • Tourism, Leisure and Hospitality Management
  • Strategy and Management


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