Monthly Archives: February 2012

Thinking on Equity/Transport: Todd Litman, Canada

We are inviting comments and background information on this our central concept behind this project, i.e., what is this thing we call transportation equity all about? We are looking for a variety of views and perspectives on our topic and not some kind of warm and glass-eyed unanimity.   If we cannot handle contradictions and fuzziness, then we are not about to make headway with this one. This first note comes in from Todd Litman executive director of the Victoria Transport Policy Institute in Victoria Canada.

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Gauging the socio-economic impacts of future urban transport initiatives

As we set out on the first of the city programs organized in this pioneering Equity/Transport series, the Helsinki project that gets underway on 1 March, it  is useful to bear in mind that to fully understand the concept of equity as a major driver of policy in the sector requires that we move well beyond the more traditional techniques of investment and impact analysis such as cost-benefit analysis. The authors take direct aim at this issue when they state: “The classical cost-benefit analysis, then, needs to be replaced by a socio-economic impact assessment methodology (SEIA) to get a measure of expected benefits and costs to different groups.”  So without further ado let’s turn to see what the authors have to share with us on this important topic.
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Message from Kaohsiung


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Einstein on your mind

If Apple had invented the bicycle . . .

Whatever could anything as abstruse as innovation, intellectual property (IP), patent protection and wall-to-wall lawyers have to do with down to earth issues like equity and transportation? Or for that matter, bicycles? Let’s have a look at what the Dutch economist and journalist Mathijs Bouman has to tell us about why you can ride any old bike you care to today. (And why you might not be able to, tomorrow.) Moral of the story: Plenty of choice is the key to an equity-based transportation system.

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The Invisible Cyclist: Transportation Justice

The transportation justice movement calls into question government subsidies of transportation forms that tend to benefit largely white and affluent urban and suburban commuters and advocates for better transit options and safer streets for poor people and people of color. This population of cyclists is largely uncounted, unrecognized, and unrepresented. Put simply, these are the invisible cyclists. In many cases, invisible cyclists are the constituents of transportation justice organizations, but only insofar as they are poor people of color. As cyclists, they remain invisible.

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Equity/Transport: View from the slums of Nairobi

We present this here as one of a series of postings which are intended to serve as food for thought and broader background on our topic as lived and seen from different angles and environments around the world, as we move ahead on the key cooperative program in Helsinki. Continue reading