An Olympic Legacy? Does the urban regeneration associated with the London 2012 Olympic Games impact on adolescent mental health?
American Journal of Epidemiology
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Public expenditure on mega-events such as the London 2012 Olympic Games is often justified by the potential legacy of urban regeneration and its associated health and wellbeing benefits for local communities. The ORiEL (Olympic Regeneration in East London) study examined whether urban regeneration associated with the 2012 Games was associated with improved mental health. Adolescents aged 11-12 years attending schools in the Olympic host London Borough of Newham or in three adjacent comparison London Boroughs, completed a survey prior to the Olympic Games (2012) and six–months and 18-months after the Games (2013 and 2014, respectively). Change in depressive symptoms and wellbeing between baseline and each follow-up were examined. 2254 adolescents from 25 randomly selected schools participated. Adolescents from the Olympic host borough were more likely to have ‘remained depressed’ between baseline and the six-month and 18-month follow-ups (Relative Risk=1.78, 95%CI 1.12-2.83; Relative Risk=1.93, 95%CI 1.01-3.70), compared with adolescents from the comparison boroughs. No differences in wellbeing were observed. There was very little evidence that urban regeneration had any positive influence on adolescent mental health and some suggestion regeneration may have been associated with maintenance of depressive symptoms. Such programmes may have limited short-term impact on the mental health of adolescents.
AuthorsCummins, S; Eldridge, S; Fahy, A; Lewis, D; Moore, DG; Smith, N; TAYLOR, SJC; Stansfeld, SA; Smuk, M; Clark, C
- Centre for Psychiatry