Category Archives: women/gender


World Transport Policy & Practice – Vol. 19, No. 2

Rural access, health & disability in Africa

A Special Edition of World Transport, Spring 2013

africa bike hosptial transportTransport, health and disability are interlinked on many levels, with transport availability directly and indirectly influenc­ing health, and health status influencing transport options. This is especially the case in rural locations of sub-Saharan Af­rica, where transport services are typically not only high cost, but also less frequent and less reliable than in urban areas.

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Saudi women can now legally bike in public (under certain conditions)

saudi woman bicycle gent Continue reading

Demand Nirbhaya—Fearless—Cities

- Anumita Roychowdhury, Dehli.  6 Mar, 2013

Catalysing safe design for public spaces should be among the top priorities to make cities safe for women, children and elderly

I first let this pass without comment—the Rs 1,000 crore Nirbhaya fund for women’s safety proposed in the Union Bdget.  Many have glossed over this with a reverent salute to quickly move on to the hard numbers of this stark accounting document. Others are angry, outraged, and dismissive of this fund as tokenism and populism with no clarity of mandate. But I read that paragraph in the budget speech once again.

My attention was riveted to this observation: “As more women enter public spaces—for education or work or access to services or leisure—there are more reports of violence against them.” The operative word here is “public spaces”.  Of course, Chidambaram has used this literally to state the obvious. But if we were to join the dots to write the terms of reference for the ministry of women and child development and other ministries to define the scope and structure of the ‘Nirbhaya fund’, then catalysing safe design for “public spaces” would be among the top priorities.

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La femme est l’avenir de l’homme

* Click to enlarge

The French poet Louis Aragon told us some two generations ago that “Woman is the future of man”.  And if we had any doubts about that as we enter into 2012, we  have today before our eyes this exceptional, moving photograph of a street demonstration yesterday in which several thousand brave women marched through central Cairo in an extraordinary expression of anger over images of soldiers beating, stripping and kicking female demonstrators in Tahrir Square. Continue reading

III. Women shaping the future of transport in cities: Who, how, where?

29 July progress report:
This off-the-cuff collaborative brainstorm is proving a pure and joyful learning experience. We started out with a single long-held idea: the importance of getting all aspects of the sustainable transport establishment on to a gender-level footing. Continue reading

II. Women Shaping the Agenda: What are the criteria for measuring “impact”?

There has been a refreshingly enthusiastic reaction to our posting yesterday asking about the general deficiency of information on women leaders in the field of sustainable transport in cities. But one note came in from the prolific environmental educator and recognized policy adviser Elizabeth Deacon challenging us in these exact words: “I assume you think there are in fact women who have had an impact. But I then must also assume that your comments have gone unheeded. At the same time, one has to wonder what the criteria are for measuring “impact” – do you know???” Fair question. Continue reading

There are no women in the world who are shaping the sustainable transportation agenda? (Apparently)

I wonder if I am the only person in the world who gets upset at this:

I am from time to time approached by groups and publications with in-progress lists identifying whom they see as the most influential people who are through their work and efforts shaping the sustainable transportation agenda, which they then ask me to comment, add to, etc. Continue reading

Fix Sustainable Transport: Ensure Full Gender Parity in all Decision and Investment Fora

Today is the International Women’s Day. And not only that, 2011 marks the one hundredth anniversary of this great and necessary idea. So what better occasion for World Streets to announce  publicly, loudly and yet once again our firm belief that the most important single thing that our society, our nations and our cities could do to increase the fairness and the effectiveness  of our transportation arrangements would be to make it a matter of the law that all decisions determining how taxpayer money is  invested in the sector should be decided by councils that respect full gender parity. We invite you to join us in this challenge and make it one of the major themes of sustainable transport policy worldwide in 2011. Continue reading

What is the best way to teach an adult to cycle?

Sustainable transport cannot be separated from sustainable cities. Nor sustainable cities from sustainable lives. Here is a small project from Sweden that takes as its goal to teach people how to balance and move safely around on a bike. But who in Sweden cannot climb on a cycle without a thought and toddle off? Well, among others immigrant women coming from Africa and the Middle East who find themselves living in this very different culture in which they are free to cycle like everyone else. This modest project is a shining example of how we can move toward sustainability: it is perspicacious, generous, practical, responsible and the sort of thing that can be replicated easily at low cost and to great effect in your community. Sustainability is made up of many small things done together in new and softer ways. Let’s listen to Ian Fiddies on their project. Continue reading

Women, Transport and Equity – editorial function

Hello Nite,

Sorry but we need more than a coordinator for this special edition.

The editorial function requires that the person in that slot read, ponder and finally approve every article, every line. It is a real job, and requires as well that she dialogue with the authors to make sure that each piece is up to our high (self imposed) standard. So, it is not just a collection, but a formal Special Edition of the Journal of World Transport Policy and Practice. Ideally the editor will also write a final warp-up piece that takes on the job of putting the edition, including the story of how it came about, into the broader context of what concerns us all most: Women, Transport and Equity.

I would love to do it but simply do not have the time or budget. I really regret that.

And if that is not in the cards, let’s not give up. There may be other ways to go with a largely unedited "collection".

Now what?

Warm regards, Eric

From: Nite Tanzarn []
Sent: Monday, 20 December, 2010 07:41
To: eric britton
Subject: Re: Gender, Transport and Equity on WTPP

Hi Eric,
Great! Cannot think of a guest editor. Kate had volunteered to coordinate the process. Would she qualify as a guest editor?