Title: Economic development as major determinant of Olympic medal wins: predicting performances of Russian and Chinese teams at Sochi Games

Authors: Wladimir Andreff

Addresses: 61, chemin du Pouget – 30350 Lédignan, France

Abstract: Starting from an econometric model successfully used to explain and then predict the distribution of medal wins across nations at the Beijing Summer Olympics, a similar model is elaborated on with some different explanatory variables for estimating the determinants of medals won per nation at Winter Games. A Tobit estimation of the model based on data from 1964 to 2010 shows that GDP per capita, population, the endowment in ski and winter sports resorts, and a host country dummy are significant determinants of medal wins at Winter Olympics. Then the estimated model is used for predicting the sporting outcomes at the 2014 Sochi Games with a focus on Russia and China. The Russian team is expected to perform better than in Vancouver 2010 and to be ranked fourth behind the USA, Germany and Canada while the Chinese team would be ranked ninth, a performance doomed to improve in the future given China's swift economic development.

Keywords: econometric modelling; forecasting; Winter Olympics; medal wins; sports economics; winter sports; economic development; Olympic medals; performance prediction; Russia; China; Sochi Games; sporting outcomes.

DOI: 10.1504/IJEPEE.2013.057908

International Journal of Economic Policy in Emerging Economies, 2013 Vol.6 No.4, pp.314 - 340

Published online: 28 Nov 2013 *

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