A field of 150 cities are set to enter the fray to be crowned the SportBusiness Ultimate Sports City of 2016 based on the prowess of their major events calendars between 2012 and 2020.

Over half of these cities are from Europe, highlighting the dominance of the continent when it comes to hosting the world’s leading sports events, although this number has decreased slightly since the last awards two years ago (which measured the period 2010 to 2018) from 56 per cent to 52 per cent.

Twenty-one per cent of the contenders are from the Asia-Pacific region (down from 22 per cent at the time of the 2014 awards) and there has been an increase in major events being awarded to cities in North America (up to 14 per cent from nine per cent). South America has seen an increase from hosting five per cent of the world’s leading major events between 2010 and 2018 to seven per cent at present. Meanwhile Africa’s share of the major events pie has fallen from seven per cent when the awards and rankings were last held to six per cent in the current period of analysis.

Over the coming weeks, the 150 cities will be shortlisted to 30 based on a further analysis of their major events calendars although, as in previous editions, that number will also include five wildcards that will be selected by our esteemed panel of external expert judges as being worthy of inclusion. The 30 cities that make the cut for the exciting 10-year anniversary edition of the SportBusiness Ultimate Sports Cities awards and rankings will be announced in early January 2016 with the overall winner and category winners set to be announced at the SportAccord Convention in April 2016.

For the first time since the awards were launched in 2006, the shortlisted cities will be invited to upload their submissions using specialist cloud-based software developed by SportBusiness Group’s measurement evaluation partner PerforMind™.

PerforMind™ enables any sports host – whether it be a city, regional authority or tourist board – to better manage proposals received by rights holders and evaluate events after they have happened, ranking an event’s key performance indicators against a host’s own internal Return-On-Objective criteria.

Speaking about the role of PerforMind™ in the SportBusiness Ultimate Sports Cities rankings and awards for 2016, head judge Rachael Church said: “We are delighted to be able to use Ultimate Sports Cities as an opportunity to showcase what PerforMind™ can do to enhance major event planning for sports cities. Our shortlisted contenders and external judges alike will find that using this tool will streamline the submission and rankings processes more efficiently.”

“From cities who already use PerforMind™ we see at first-hand how important transparency, efficient process, robust evaluation and reporting has become,” added Mark Cornish, Head of Global Partnerships for PerforMind™. “We are delighted to partner SportBusiness during Ultimate Sports Cities’ 10th anniversary”.

For more information on the SportBusiness Ultimate Sports Cities 2016 awards and rankings or to learn more about PerforMind™, please contact David Hunt (david.hunt@sportbusiness.com).