By Jake Kanter
The Beijing Olympics kicked off today with a spectacular opening ceremony at the national stadium. The arena is known as the Bird's Nest because of its elaborate weaved steel structure, but for all its decadence, its price tag is unclear.
The same cannot be said for London 2012. The Olympic Delivery Authority (ODA) - which is charged with overseeing the 2012 purse strings - is already creaking under the weight of scrutiny from auditors and MPs. With the games four years away, the parliamentary Culture, Media and Sport Committee has already described ODA cost rises for the aquatics centre as “risible”.
As taxpayers, we may grumble and roll our eyes at this kind of budgetary control, but at least we are afforded the transparency to see the figures. And that beats being kept in the dark like the Chinese citizens - no matter how many fireworks lit up the Beijing sky earlier today.
What are your thoughts on the level of scrutiny ODA buyers face?
How does it compare with your own organisation?