World Transport — and how do people like us read in 2013?

I am writing a book under the working title of No Excuses: A Tale of Cities, Indolence, Complexity and . . .  Simplicity.  The word indolence has been carefully chosen, since it points up one of the main arguments of the book – namely my firm belief after something like four decades of work in  the field, that what far the greater part of everything that we needed to know to correct the policy and investment follies that have largely characterized our field and pilloried our cities over these decades, were fully laid out and largely understood by the mid seventies.

That’s quite an accusation, and the book is taking on the task of making clear why and how that happened. And with what ramifications.

But let’s change gears for a moment here. We have recently set up a collaborative program entitled the World Transport Policy and Practice Archives, the goal of which is to prepare and publish in easily readable form all of the editions of the journal published since its founding in 1995, which until now have been available only in hard to reach PDF form.

Today as part of this project we posted the full contents of Volume 6, Number 1, 2000 which contains a handful of thoughtful pieces by Paul Tranter, Peter Lonergan, Peter Newman,  Jeff Kenworthy, Jörg Beckmann, Edward Akinyemi, Mark Zuidgeest,  Pnina O. Plaut, Deborah F. Shmuel and John Whitelegg.  If you click here you will be taken direct to the Journal in our Archives – http://wp.me/p2PF75-7m.

Now we have laid out this edition so that it makes an agreeable read on an iPad, tablet or larger smart phone. We have chosen to do this because we observe that people — this author included – do not by and large do very well at reading longer pieces on their computer monitor. Too many conflicts and calls for our attention.

So let me recommend this when you have a moment. If you are seriously into sustainable transport and sustainable cities, and you want to take a bit of time to hear what these authors had to say on the subjects which continue to persecute us today, find yourself a comfortable place to sit far away from your computer, pull out your portable reader, pour yourself some tea, and spend a bit of time with these thoughtful people who have much to say about the challenges we face today.  You will, I am sure, be surprise and impressed. At least I was.

And then write us a note if you wish to share with us your observations and recommendations on this program.  Because we are only getting started.

Eric Britton

The  World Transport Archives – http://worldtransportarchives.wordpress.com

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