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Sustainable development principles and their implications for transport
KTH, Superseded Departments, Infrastructure and Planning.
1996 (English)In: Ecological Economics, ISSN 0921-8009, E-ISSN 1873-6106, Vol. 19, no 3, 269-282 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

'Sustainable mobility' has been adopted as an overall objective for European transport policy, and similar intentions are expressed in other parts of the world. However, little has been done to define what 'sustainable mobility' would actually imply for our understanding and assessment of transport. We suspect that this much used term could merely end up acting as a lubricant to the very development it was meant to challenge: The ever increasing movement of people and goods. In this article we attempt to place transport in the context of sustainable development principles. We emphasise the need to include principles of development (increasing well-being and equity) as well as sustainability (preserving natural and man-made capital). Four such principles are suggested, taking inspiration from Herman Daly and others. We then turn to explore the main features of transport, establishing a comprehensive transport concept. The concept combines a systems perspective with a service perspective. Omitting either one would disable a complete consideration of sustainable development. Our confrontation of the four principles with the reality of current transport trends gives rise to several critical implications. The most important of which relate to the contribution of transport to depleting natural capital and quality of life. Moreover, we are also forced to challenge the value of increasing mobility itself, if other forms of access may provide relevant substitutes. The article thereby outlines some conceptual foundations for a transport policy that could qualify as sustainable.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
1996. Vol. 19, no 3, 269-282 p.
Keyword [en]
sustainable development principles, transport, mobility, accessibility
National Category
Civil Engineering
URN: urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-13399DOI: 10.1016/S0921-8009(96)00045-6ISI: A1996VX13600011OAI: diva2:325056
QC 20100617Available from: 2010-06-17 Created: 2010-06-17 Last updated: 2010-06-17Bibliographically approved
In thesis
1. What is the Point of IT?: Backcasting urban transport and land-use futures
Open this publication in new window or tab >>What is the Point of IT?: Backcasting urban transport and land-use futures
2000 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other scientific)
Abstract [en]

Sustainable development, future studies, informationtechnology, urban land-use and passenger transport. These arethe five concepts upon which this thesis and the eight papersit contains are based. The thesis includes both a developmentof future studies methodology, especially with regard tobackcasting, and analyses of the relationship betweensustainable development, information technology, transport andland-use in future cities

Paper I (Gudmundsson&Höjer, 1996) suggests foursustainable development principles and discusses theimplications of these four principles for the transportsystem.

Paper II (Höjer&Mattsson, 2000) is amethodological paper where backcasting is discussed in relationto some other future studies approaches. Moreover, the use of anumber of common empirical approaches in such studies iscriticised for being too deterministic.

Paper III (Höjer, 1997) presents a study where fourtechnical scenarios of intelligent transport systems weregenerated and evaluated. The evaluation used a Delphi-inspiredbackcasting approach, where a total of some 100 internationalexperts contributed to a two-round survey.

Paper IV (Höjer, 1998a) highlights three of thescenarios generated in Paper III and elaborates some resultsfrom the evaluation of them.

Paper V (Steen et al., 1999) uses assumptions, based onother studies, regarding global future energy supply as well ason the development of vehicle technology and traffic volumes.Based on these, a scenario of a sustainable transport systemfor Sweden in 2040 is developed.

Paper VI (Höjer, 2000b) looks at how the patterns ofcommuting and land-use can change with new organisationalforms. The change can either contribute to reduced trafficvolumes and a more sustainable transport system, or it can leadsociety even further into unsustainability.

Paper VII (Höjer, 2000a) reports from a calculation ofpotential effects on commuting from a change towards anode-structured Stockholm region. The calculation is based onorigin-destination matrices generated from a traffic analysismodel.

Paper VIII (Höjer, 1996) is a generalising analyticalpaper on the relationship between information technology,especially transport telematics, and sustainabledevelopment.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Stockholm: KTH, 2000. xi, 37 p.
Trita-IP. FR, 00-72
transport land-use information technology sustainable development
National Category
Engineering and Technology
urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-3016 (URN)
Public defence
2000-09-22, 00:00
QC 20100617Available from: 2000-09-19 Created: 2000-09-19 Last updated: 2010-06-17Bibliographically approved

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