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Does relationship quality matter in policy-making? The impact of government-public relationships and residents’ perceptions on their support towards a mega-sport event

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journal contribution
posted on 23.12.2021, 13:24 by Sungkyung KimSungkyung Kim, Elisavet ManoliElisavet Manoli
Guided by the increase in social and political challenges faced by local governments in their efforts to host mega-sport events, this study attempts to shed light on the under-researched relationship quality between a local government and its residents. Enhancing the relationship quality and mutual understanding through two-way communication between the government and its residents has become more important than ever, with the host community considered a key stakeholder in the policy decision-making process, due to the development of online communication technologies. This research aims to identify the major determinants of residents’ support, using government public relationships and social exchange theory. Data collected through a survey of Tokyo residents (N = 406), where the Tokyo 2020 Olympic and Paralympic Games were hosted, are analysed using structural equation modelling. Results show that satisfaction with the government can considerably influence the perceived impacts of a mega-sport event and trust, while trust in the government is shown to be a robust predictor of residents’ support and a mediator to social exchange theory. Also, the importance of a mega-sport event’s perceived impacts on residents’ support is shown, further supporting social exchange theory. Through the findings and the integration of the two theories, this study illustrates the need for the government to focus on producing policies aiming to increase its public satisfaction and thus their trust in government using balanced symmetric communication, which in turn can raise residents’ support for a mega-sport event and help establish a mutually beneficial relationship between the government and its public.



  • Sport, Exercise and Health Sciences

Published in

International Journal of Sport Policy and Politics


1 - 18


Informa UK Limited


VoR (Version of Record)

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© The authors

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This is an Open Access Article. It is published by Taylor and Francis under the Creative Commons Attribution-Non Commercial-No Derivatives 4.0 International (CC BY-NC-ND 4.0). Full details of this licence are available at:

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Dr Elisavet Manoli. Deposit date: 21 December 2021