Tokyo 2020, IOC Look Toward Simplified Games, Present Progress Reports

The Tokyo Olympic Organizing Committee (Tokyo 2020) presented a progress report to the International Olympic Committee (IOC) Executive Board on Wednesday outlining the plans put in place for the postponed Games that will run in 2021.

After being officially postponed on March 24, the two committees held an Executive Board Review on April 16 where a framework for the preparation of the 2021 Games was agreed upon.

The Games are expected to be “simplified” in some form. “(The Games will not be) done with grand splendor,” organizers said Wednesday night. IOC President Thomas Bach told reporters that approximately 200 proposals to simplify the Games are being considered.

In the presentation on Wednesday, Tokyo 2020 released documents on positioning, principles for re-planning, and a roadmap to the Games.


In the positioning document, which can be found here, the core values of the Olympic Games and Tokyo 2020 specifically are laid out, with the focus emphasized on “Athletes, sustainable development, recovery, reconstruction and the power of sports to help communities find a better future.”

The committee acknowledges how much the COVID-19 pandemic has shifted things, but adds that “It presents a huge opportunity for Japan, the Olympic Movement and the whole world.”

They also refer to the 2021 Games being an “Unprecedented celebration of unity and solidarity,” “A milestone in the world’s shared journey of recovery,” and “A symbol of hope, resilience and the power of humanity working together as one.”

In terms of practicality, three key principles are listed that will be carried out for the Games:

  • Prioritizing health and safety of athletes, spectators, stakeholders, volunteers and staff.
  • Reduce the cost impact of postponement and promote public interest.
  • Simplify and reduce the complexity of the Games to ensure they can be organized efficiently, safely and sustainably in this new context.


The Principles document, which can be found here, reiterates the three objectives listed above, while also claiming that all sport competition and athlete-related elements will remain the same as usual unless absolutely necessary to be changed for Games operational reasons.

It also describes how they need “Collaboration between all stakeholders and delivery partners to ensure relevant experience is leveraged to find creative solutions to simplify Games delivery from the viewpoint of reducing cost and implement COVID-19 countermeasures.” This includes the following points:

  • Encourage stakeholders to optimise their delegations working in Tokyo.
  • Ensure that focus of optimization is placed across all areas including those with higher budget impacts.
  • Ensure adjusted plans per venue and stakeholders to optimize and streamline the services levels.
  • Reconsider non-core cultural elements of the Games.

Roadmap To 2021

The roadmap, found here, outlines the key dates, phases and objectives to keep the committees on track moving towards the beginning of the Games in July 2021.

For example, the objectives for July and August 2020 is “Coordination with delivery partners/stakeholders towards basic agreement of service levels,” and Countermeasures for challenges caused by postponement.” The September-December block deals with further countermeasures, January to March is the “Preparation for implementation” phase, with the final preparation occuring April to June.

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Frankie 5 Angels
10 months ago

I’m just here for Dick Pound…..comments and I don’t see any

About James Sutherland

James Sutherland

James swam five years at Laurentian University in Sudbury, Ontario, specializing in the 200 free, back and IM. He finished up his collegiate swimming career in 2018, graduating with a bachelor's degree in economics. In 2019 he completed his graduate degree in sports journalism. Prior to going to Laurentian, James swam …

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