Lausanne, Switzerland, 4 February 2018 – BCW Sports practice, the sports unit of strategic communications and global public relations firm Burson-Marsteller, together with Around the Rings, one of the most influential media in the international sports world, today unveiled the results of their 2017 Ranking of Sports Cities.

For the sixth year in row, 2012 Olympic Games host London remains untouched as the world’s leading sport city. Jumping to the second and third positions, respectively, are the 2028 and 2024 Olympic Games hosts, Los Angeles and Paris. Rounding out the top five finishers are the Olympic capital, Lausanne, Switzerland, and the next Summer Olympic Games host, Tokyo. New to the ranking of the top 10 cities is 2022 Winter Olympic Games host Beijing which replaces the 2016 Summer Olympic Games host Rio de Janeiro.

The ‘2017 Ranking of Sports City’ ranks the top 50 sports cities from around the world based on public perception of a city’s association with sport. Results are based on a public online vote coupled with an industry vote from a select group of top sport leaders drawn from international federations, national Olympic committees, sport media and other influencers in the world of sport. Given the expertise from sports leaders, their answers are weighted more heavily than those from the general public.

Lars Haue-Pedersen, Managing Director, BCW Sports practice, said: “It is interesting to see that the top five, if not the top 10 world’s leading sports cities, are involved in different ways with the Olympic brand. This is a trend we have already seen in recent editions of the ‘Ranking of Sports Cities’, but it is even more striking this year – the Olympics is clearly a very powerful brand for cities to be associated with.”

Ed Hula, Editor and Founder of Around the Rings, said: “Choosing the best host city is undoubtedly one of the single most important tasks event rights holders face. The cities appearing in the ‘Ranking of Sports Cities’ – in particular the top five finishers – have proven themselves time and again to be successful hosts. We look forward to many more visits to each of them, as well as to seeing new cities that may not yet be part of the ‘Ranking of Sports Cities’.”

With each edition of the poll, the three lowest ranked cities drop off the list, and the top three non-listed cities named by the survey respondents are added. New cities to be added to the 2018 edition of the ranking, as chosen by voters, are Seoul, Lisbon and Mexico City.

The full results of the ‘2017 Ranking of Sports Cities’ can be downloaded here.

Votes for the 2018 edition of the ‘Ranking of Sports Cities’ will open in November 2018 and results will be announced in December 2018.

About BCW Sports practice

BCW Sports practice is the sports unit of global advisory firm Burson-Marsteller. BCW Sports practice help their clients to define and achieve their objectives and to reach their full potential in sport. By combining expert insights, trusted relationships and global resources, BCW Sports practice empower clients and ensure their long-term success. Based in Lausanne, Switzerland – the home of international sport – BCW Sports practice work closely with their colleagues in the worldwide Burson-Marsteller network of 150 offices operating in 110 countries across six continents. Burson-Marsteller is a subsidiary of WPP (NASDAQ listing: WPPGY), the world’s leader in communications services.

About Burson-Marsteller

Burson-Marsteller, established in 1953, is a leading global strategic communications and public relations firm. It provides clients with strategic thinking and program execution across a full range of public relations, public affairs, reputation and crisis management, advertising and digital strategies. The firm’s seamless worldwide network consists of 77 offices and 85 affiliate offices, together operating in 110 countries across six continents. Burson-Marsteller is a part of Young & Rubicam Group, a subsidiary of WPP (NASDAQ: WPPGY), the world’s leader in communications services. For more information, please visit

About Around the Rings

For more than 25 years, Around the Rings has been leading the way in coverage of the Olympic Movement and elite world sport. The subscription-based publication focuses on bidding, preparation and execution of the Olympics and other international multi-sport events including FIFA and Rugby World Cups, IAAF championships, swimming championships, among others. ATR platforms include content marketing, online, email, print, and social media, where it is the market leader. ATR’s content is produced by a worldwide team headquartered in Atlanta. International correspondents are based in Britain, Czech Republic, Germany, Vancouver (CAN), and Australia. PyeongChang will be its 13th Games for on-the-scene coverage.


Héloïse Signe, Senior Consultant, BCW Sports practice or +41 21 313 23 00