The World Cup will be the biggest sporting event of 2002, but the Japanese and
Korean governments are also hoping that it will be one of the biggest economic
events of the year. Impact studies by respected economic research institutes
predict a dramatic boost to GDP in both countries. This paper explains how
these forecasts are generated and explains the tendency for such forecasts to be
over-optimistic. The paper concludes with some policy recommendations for
governments and sporting bodies considering hosting such events.