The Australian Sports Commission (ASC) held its biennial conference, Our Sporting Futures, on 29 and 30 July 2010. At this event, Brian Parmenter, who leads the Economy-wide modelling team at Frontier (Australia), presented the results of a study into the economic contribution of sport to Australia. The study identified three main ways in which sport delivers benefits to the economy, above those gained directly by providers of sport services or by participants.

  • First, community level sport promotes physical activity, with benefits in terms of reduced health-care costs and improved labour productivity. Improved labour productivity could contribute as much as $12 billion per year.
  • Second, sport draws in a high level of volunteer participation. The labour input of volunteers is valued at approximately $4 billion per year. 
  • Third, the value to Australian households of international success by Australian elite athletes is likely to be well in excess of the annual budget for elite sports (which was about $23 per household per week in 2007/08.)

The study was commissioned by ASC and undertaken by Frontier.

For more information, please contact Marita O’Keeffe at or call on +61 (0)3 9620 4488.

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