Mobility & Access in Cities

The theme builds upon current and previous work in the FUT program, and addresses resource-efficient, socially- and culturally-inclusive transportation systems that improve and facilitate access in cities.

The theme has a geographical emphasis on rapidly-changing urban environments in Africa and other urban contexts with similar conditions, challenges and opportunities, e.g. India, Southeast Asia, and to some extent Latin America and China.

To some extent access can be provided through proximity and concentration of activities, but people also need to move around in the city to reach desired destinations. Many city residents travel long distances, spending several hours a day in cars, buses, trains or simply walking.

Hence, mobility is a key aspect of urban life and impacts a wide range of issues beyond the mobility and transportation system itself, such as justice, security and equality, climate change and the use of natural resources. Many cities are quite dependent on mobility through private car use. However, urban sustainability policies around the world are now developing in directions that focus increasingly on other modes of transportation, including public transportation, walking, biking and also so-called shared mobility solutions.

We know a lot about technologies, people’s behaviour and perceptions, system operation, finance, and the environmental and climate effects of urban mobility systems. Nevertheless, research is still needed to investigate and draw conclusions from the different contexts and stories around the world, and to contribute findings to improving policies and practice. With this in mind, VREF continues to support activities under the theme of Mobility and Access in Cities.

From 2019, VREF have launched a new thematic initiative on Mobility and Access in African Cities (MAC). The MAC programme will run 2019-2024, with a first set of pilot projects initiated in 2017–2018. The programme will be geographically focused on Africa south of the Sahara and structured around the three subregions of Western Africa, Eastern Africa and Southern Africa.

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Theme News

Research Briefs

  • China Urban Transport Database (CUTD)
    2/23/2017
    This Research Brief presents research achievements and experience gained in constructing the China Urban Transport Database (CUTD), which has been developed according to the principles of operability, sustainability, scalability, and accessibility.
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  • Linking Higher Education and Practical Knowledge
    1/24/2017
    Written by Herrie Schalekamp and Gail Jennings, and based on work by the VREF African Center of Excellence for Studies in Public and Non-Motorised Transport (ACET), University of Cape Town, this research brief discusses the University of Cape Town’s work amongst adult learners who have extensive experience of public transport operations but little exposure to higher education.
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October 2019
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MOBILITY & ACCESS IN AFRICAN CITIES:

CALL FOR PROJECT PROPOSALS: EXPLORATORY COMPARATIVE RESEARCH PROJECTS

The current Call is mainly directed to sub-Saharan university-based researchers with expertise on sustainable and equitable mobility and access in sub-Saharan African cities, and/or previously engaged in transport-related research, and strongly interested in carrying out interdisciplinary research on issues related to sustainable and equitable mobility and access,

Call open until 2019-10-15

 STUDY VISIT GRANT 2019

The VREF invites PhD students and researchers in early stages of their career to apply for a Study Visit Grant to be supported with up to SEK 30 000.

Invitation open until 2019-10-31

Blog! Blog! Blog!

Global Mobility Research

This Meeting of the Minds' blog monthly releases interviews of global transportation researchers from the VREF's Future Urban Transport Program Network.

TheCityFix

This CityFix series, produced by the WRI (World Ressources Institute) Ross Center for Sustainable Cities and supported by the VREF, discusses walking and cycling in cities with a special focus on low- and middle-income countries.

Each year the Håkan Frisinger Foundation for Transportation Research awards a scholarship to a prominent researcher.

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About VREF

The Volvo Research and Educational Foundations (VREF) inspires, initiates and supports research and educational activities through the Future Urban Transport Programme - How to deal with the complexity of urban transport (FUT). 

Our Vision: Sustainable transport for equitable access in urban areas

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2019