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„We want to present athletics in Berlin as young, attractive and dynamic“

<p">Since last

October Heinrich Clausen is Head of Organisation of the World Championships in

Athletics 2009 in Berlin. The 57 year-old already had this position at the

European Championships in Munich 2002 and was working for the continental

championships in Stuttgart 1986 as well as for the World Championships in

1993 in Stuttgart. Heiner Henze, treasurer of the German

Athletics Federation (DLV), is the honorary managing director of the Berlin

Organising Committee 2009 GmbH (BOC 2009). Heinrich Clausen already worked with

him during the preparations for the European Championships in 1986. The World

Championships will be held in Berlin’s Olympic Stadium from August 15th

to 23rd 2009.

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Mister

Clausen, what is the head of organisation doing three and a half years prior to

the start of the World Championships?

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Heinrich

Clausen: „After we built up an office the planning phase immediately began. It

is about concepts and structures as well as to distribute a master plan. In

some areas we are already in a phase of detailed planning. Hotel reservations,

the IAAF congress or concepts for the stadium are among these. We deal with questions

about infrastructure and logistics and set a budget. It is a little bit like a

baby. The human character is formed already in the first years. We have to make

sure that we’ll have a base with good initial conditions, that will

characterize the 2009 World Championships successfully.”

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Do you know

what the budget will look like?

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Heinrich

Clausen: „The total budget will be between 40 and 45 Million Euro.“

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How does

the manpower situation look like?

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Heinrich

Clausen: „At the moment I work with a colleague in our office in the area of

the Olympic Stadium. All steps are put forward to Mister Henze. We developed a

manpower concept and will start to recruite employees soon. We already have a

marketing manager as well as a director for sport tecnique.

Miss Gabriele

Thiele works for us since January 1st and already moved in our

offices. She is responsible for generating new ideas for example for the

marathon. We will soon hire a logistics manager too. I think we will have a

staff of 45 full time employees in the final phase. The latter of them will

join our team approximately one year prior to the World Championships. But the

work won’t lie only on the shoulders of our employees.

We will work together

with many honorary employees and volunteers. Some areas will be cared for by external

companies. These could be areas such as promotion, opening ceremony and the

cultural program.”

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Keyword promotion:

You have a difficult situation at the moment as the public is only aware of the

soccer world cup.

What can you do and how do you see the situation after the

final on July 9th?  

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Heinrich

Clausen: „At present everything is about the soccer world cup. But we don’t

need to complain about it. Soccer is number one this year and it is a great

thing to host it in Germany and having the final in Berlin. As far as legally possible we will

try to use the soccer world cup for our own promotional points to show the

media and the public that we will have another sporting highlight in Berlin three years later.

I am convinced

that we are able to promote a similar enthusiasm for the World Championships in

Athletics as we are now experiencing for the soccer world cup. I am feeling a

really positive feedback. And I hope that we will have similar attention for

athletics after the soccer world cup.” 

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Are there

problems in the planing phase standing out? The demolition of the International

Congress Center (ICC) in Berlin is discussed over and over again for

example.

In the World Championships application it was scheduled for the IAAF

Council meeting. 

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Heinrich

Clausen: „A possible demolition of the ICC will not affect us, because the IAAF

Council meeting will take place in the Estrell Hotel. Sure there are crucial

points as everybody knows. One for example is the airport and the connected

accreditation center. But we will find a solution for that.“  

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Apart from

the planning – what are your big goals or visions?

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Heinrich

Clausen: „We want to develop a passion for athletics. We will try to have the

Olympic Stadium sold out at least for the evening sessions. I am confident that

we can make this. But we also want to show athletics to the young generation to

wake new enthusiasm for this sport.

We will present athletics in Berlin as

young, attractive and dynamic.” 

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