Comparing the experiences and legacies of volunteers at the FIS Nordic Ski World Championships in Oslo 2011 and Val di Fiemme 2013

Martin Schnitzer, Elsa Kristiansen, Dag Vidar Hanstad


Volunteers play an important role in delivering events, especially events over a longer period of time. As example the FIS Nordic Ski World Championships (Nordic WSC) take place every two years in a member country of the International Ski Federation (FIS). These events usually last 12 days and combine competitions in cross-country skiing, ski jumping, and Nordic. Furthermore volunteers do also represent one of the biggest groups of stakeholders taking part at the event. The purpose of this article is to shed light on the experiences and legacies as perceived by volunteers at two events of the same type (Nordic WSC), but staged in two different places and two different cultural settings.

Therefore, 29 volunteers were interviewed, whereat half at got interviewed at the FIS Nordic WSC Oslo ant the other half at the FIS Nordic WSC Val di Fiemme.

The interviews underline that people volunteer for many different reasons, whereat Norwegian volunteers displayed a more individualistic orientation. Italian volunteers have a greater commitment to their local community. In addition Italian volunteers feel that FIS acknowledge them for the good organisation of the events. Other differences can be found in the field of community acknowledgement. Norwegian volunteers added that the Norwegian economy does not appreciate this type of experience and in Italy also Students had to volunteer, which was also appreciated by community.

The results show that the retention rate may be higher in Val di Fiemme due to the WSC being a project-based undertaking. Hence, local community loyalty or simple hobbies could show an increase in retention. For future events further research should be undertaken in this field of research.


sport events, volunteerism, experiences, legacies, motvation

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