Stakeholder Analysis: FIFA 2014 World Cup

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Introduction to Stakeholder Analysis

In our day to day lives, we encounter events that have been set by different people for different reasons. Most of these events are universal and are held by companies, institutions, governments and many associations. Therefore, an event is an occasion or happening that has been carefully planned by relevant stakeholders. Events always lead to the development of other sectors of the economy such as infrastructural development, destination marketing and tourism. Stakeholders are the people who have legitimate interests in the planning of an event and eventually its outcomes.

When planning for an event, the event manager has the responsibility of ensuring that all stakeholders are included in the decision-making process so that the outcomes of the event are able to meet the needs and expectations of the stakeholders. In addition, the event should adhere to certain factors both internal and external to the organization. Such factors include government regulations, requirements of the media fraternity, sponsors of the event and even the community as a whole. The success of an event is a result of effective coordination among all the stakeholders involved (Hollway, 2002). The key component of any event is the numerous stakeholders with their own interests to protect for a well-executed occurrence (Hemmerling, 1997).

Importance of Stakeholder Analysis

Currently, many sectors have revolutionized the manner in which events are organized and executed. In the past, events were not properly planned due to little or no coordination among the stakeholders. The government as stakeholder plans, coordinates and regulates events for political, economic, cultural and social reasons. The corporate sector on the other hand plans for events in order to create public awareness about the existence of their products, increase sales or stage a certain agenda to the public.

The importance of event stakeholders to the success of an event cannot be underestimated. Therefore, identifying all the involved stakeholders helps event managers in balancing expectations of these stakeholders appropriately and in the process reducing tensions (Getz et al, 2007). It can also lead to the success of small businesses due to mobilizing of resources and ideas between different stakeholders.

Stakeholders interact with each other through competition and collaboration (Gummesson, 1996) in order to obtain their interests which they compete amongst themselves. It is therefore advisable for the stakeholders to pull their efforts and resources together so as to attract visitors and make the event a success. In view of the stakeholder theory, different stakeholders come into the organization in the process making it a central point for the airing of different views and perspectives which are not coherent (Donaldson and Preston, 1995).

Stakeholders are different from each other. It is therefore the work of the organization’s management to prioritize these stakeholders according to their strengths and weaknesses. This means the concept analysis has to be done to unveil more regarding stakeholder analysis. Reid and Arcadia proposed a model in which these stakeholders can be classified into two major categories; Primary stakeholders that can also be referred to as internal stakeholders are those which the whole event strongly depends on and they include employees, volunteers, participants, suppliers, attendees’ etc. Secondary stakeholders on the other hand include businesses, government, and the host community among others (Reid and Arcodia, 2002).

During strategic planning and positioning of an event, it is important to identify and classify relevant stakeholders. It is therefore necessary for stakeholder analysis and management to be carried out in order to build event brands that are more effective (Merrilees et al, 2005, p. 1060). After all the stakeholders have been identified and analyzed, it becomes easier to determine the relationship each stakeholder has with the organization. Those stakeholders who are most involved in the event planning of the organization are therefore given a higher priority than others. The availability of a stakeholder analysis program can help an organizing committee avoid problems and challenges that may stem from some stakeholders who may feel short-changed.

Considering these factors during the development of the mission and vision statements of a sports association is important. Getting the critical assessment of the stakeholders, their short and long-term interests with the organization, evaluating how the stakeholders will be affected by the organization’s strategy and calculating their potential influence on the success of the organization are some of the tools that are explored in the stakeholder analysis.

Stakeholder Analysis at FIFA 2014 World Cup

The consequences of not conducting a stakeholder analysis in the event planning cannot be underestimated. One of these risks was observed in South Africa during the 2010 FIFA world cup whereby the event did not change the poor living standards of the locals. The analysis did not include the long term economic gain or loss of the country. Moreover, the 2014 World cup held in Brazil was preceded by civil unrest in which the public took to the streets complaining about their poor living standards whereas the country was using millions of dollars to put up infrastructures for the world cup.

Most of these effects arise because event managers do not include all the stakeholders in the planning of the event, especially the host communities. Social evils are mostly associated with the failure to carry out a stakeholder analysis. Insecurity, the strain on resources and immorality among the participants and spectators are some of the social evils associated with the poor or absence of event planning and stakeholder analysis.

The International Federation of Football Association (FIFA) is the international body that governs football soccer. This organization uses football to reach and touch the world thus taking hope to where there was none. In doing so, FIFA enhances global integration. The mission of FIFA is to develop the soccer game, touch the world and finally build a better future. By conducting the world cup after every four years in different countries, this organization develops football by investing in people and the society which are the major stakeholders for FIFA. Youth development programs have been initiated by FIFA to help promote global unity, humanitarian values, cultural values and education.

The host community for the FIFA 2014 world cup was Brazil. As a country, many people have argued that Brazil was not prepared for the world cup because all the stakeholders were not consulted to give an opinion on the issue. The success or failure of an event such as the world cup is greatly influenced by the host community and since there was civil unrest in Brazil, it is evident that the host community was not properly updated on the event and if they were, then it is possible that their interests were not covered in the final decision (Allen et al, 2002).

Many Brazilians took to the streets protesting that their poor living conditions had not been solved by the government and yet it was spending millions of dollars to upgrade infrastructures for the world cup. A proper approach to this would have been for the event managers to meet with Brazil’s residents, traders, public authorities and all other lobby groups and deliberate on the issue. After listening to them, the event managers could then get the facts and put them into consideration before the kick-off of the world cup.

On commencement of the world cup, the residents of Brazil were given an opportunity to present their culture to the world. They also displayed their lifestyle and way of life including the plants of the Amazon. Brazil’s communities were given the benefits of buying tickets at a slightly lower price compared to people from other parts of the world. The starting match was reserved for the country’s national team. Many other benefits were accorded to the host community.

Sponsors and partners of the 2014 FIFA world cup were mostly corporations such as Adidas, Coca-Cola, Emirates, Hyundai-Ki motors, Sony Inc. among others. Currently, there have been a growing number of sponsors because sponsorship is no longer regarded as just giving back to society but a promotional tool in the marketing of a company’s products. These corporations have made huge investments in the world cup including devoting additional resources in support of the event with the aim of achieving corporate objectives.

The selection of the Escort kids by McDonald’s, Flag bearers including all the wears by Adidas and the Ball Crew by Coca Cola shows how these corporations are committed as official partners to provide the necessary supplies and coming up with attractive promotions in support of the event (Niersbach, 2006).

Media also played an important role in the world cup. The global networking and instant electronic transmission of images brought the world cup sporting action into our lounges. The earth is now a global reality courtesy of the media and technology. Social media such as Facebook, Twitter, Instagram YouTube, Flickr and LinkedIn have made communication more personalized and interactive because it allows users to comment and send their views on the world cup proceedings. Sporting action has been the most advantaged with regards to the media industry (Cunningham and Culligan, 1990).

Wiring in modern stadiums is designed in such a way that every viewer gets the best view of the game and that they can easily access social media. The capabilities of a spectator have therefore been improved and technologically enhanced to parallel with those of viewers who watch through the media. Media is an important tool in event analysis because if properly integrated into the event, it has a lot to offer. Moreover, the media influences the perceptions of the viewers and public opinion about the organization.

The participants and spectators of the 2014 world cup determined the success of the event. FIFA was mindful of the needs of its participants and spectators. Such needs included adequate security and the need for comfort. In addition, FIFA strived to make the event memorable and magical for the spectators as well as the participants. This was illustrated by the presence of renowned musicians and display of the Brazilian culture accompanied by spectacular patterns. In addition, there was a contemporary stadium technology that enhanced spectator experience and also internet accessibility to extend social networking.

In conclusion, for any event to be successful, the philosophy of the organization should be shared by all the players of the team, starting from the top manager to the coworkers. All the workers of FIFA had their part to play to realize the success of the world cup in Brazil. Good team working and management are the key factors that led to the eventual success of the world cup. Blatter, being the president of FIFA did his best to organize his entire management team and coworkers to ensure that the event that lasted for over a month was not only successful but also memorable in the minds of people all over the world!

List of References

Allen, J., O’Toole, W., McDonnell, I., and Harris, R., (2002). Festival and Special Event Management. Queensland: John Wiley and Sons Milton.

Cunningham, M. T., and Culligan, K. (1990). Competitiveness through networks of relationships in information technology product markets. In Ford, D. (Ed.), Understanding Business Markets: Interaction, Relationships and Networks. London Academic Press.

Donaldson, T., and Preston, L. E. (1995). The stakeholder theory of the corporation: concepts, evidence, and implications. Academy of Management Review, 20(1): 65-91.

Getz, D., Andersson, T., and Larson, M., (2007). Festival stakeholder roles; concepts and case studies. Event Management, 10(2/3): 103-22.

Gummesson, E. (1996). Relationship marketing and imaginary organizations: a synthesis. European Journal of Marketing, 30(2): 31-44.

Hemmerling, M. (1997). What makes an event a success for a host city Sponsors and others?, paper presented to The Big Event Tourism New South Wales Conference, Wollongong, New South Wales.

Hollway, S. (2002). Keynote address delivered to Events and Place-Making Conference, Australian Centre for Event Management, University of Technology, Sydney.

Merrilees, B., Getz, D., and O’Brien, D (2005). Marketing stakeholder analysis: Branding the Brisbane Goodwill Games. European Journal of Marketing, 39(9/10): 1060-1077.

Niersbach, W. (2006). FIFA World Cup Germany 2006, New 15 An XXL World Cup for the media. Web.

Reid, S., and Arcodia, C., (2002). Understanding the role of the stakeholder in event management. In Jago, L., Leery, R., Allen, J., Hede, A. (Eds.). Events and Place-Making. Sydney: Australian Centre for Event Management, UTS.

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