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Incorporating Social Justice into Transport Futures: Development of a New Futures Method for Strategic Transport Planning in Sub Saharan Africa

Idriss-Yahya, Sheriff (2018) Incorporating Social Justice into Transport Futures: Development of a New Futures Method for Strategic Transport Planning in Sub Saharan Africa. PhD thesis, University of Leeds.

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In the face of rising emissions from transport, urbanization, global warming, security concerns, digitalization, ageing population, peak oil uncertainty and a long-standing concern for accessibility, transport practitioners and academics understand that transport planning and policies must be seen to be taking account of, and addressing all these challenges in tandem. Encouragingly, a number of interdisciplinary and integrated tools have been developed to help address each or combinations of these issues. These approaches have, for example, stressed the need for policymakers to overcome organizational boundaries, accommodate some degree of uncertainty, and to engage with all relevant stakeholders in the decision-making environment in a process of systematic thinking that is holistic rather than linear. However, a review of these tools in the area of strategic transport planning shows that they are mostly used to imagine environmentally sustainable transport futures. There is very little in the literature in terms of their use to think about socially-just transport futures. This is against the backdrop of some understanding that the goal of environmentally sustainable transport futures is intricately linked to, and contingent on socially sustainable goals such as equity, fairness and justice. To address this deficiency, this research develops a methodology for imagining socially-just transport futures by drawing upon three main futures approaches (scenario planning, backcasting and visioning) on one hand, and the principles of social justice on the other. The method was developed using desk-based research involving a review of the state-of-the-art in futures methods and conceptualisations of social justice principles. To critically evaluate its usefulness, the method was implemented in a workshop in Ghana with policymakers and other relevant stakeholders in the field of transport. The findings show that the method developed in this thesis is a useful planning tool for imagining socially-just transport futures. This it does by helping transport planners and policymakers to more openly deal with uncertainty in long-term futures, opens up debates on the various pathways to achieve socially-just transport futures, and highlights the commitments and investments needed to actualise a vision of social justice in transport. The results also show that while transport planners and practitioners in Ghana are not oblivious to the concept of social justice, the term is generally narrowly-construed.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Keywords: Ethics, Social Justice, Distributive Justice, Procedural Justice, Ethical Matrix, Scenario Planning, Backacsting, Visioning, Strategic Transport Planning, Sub Saharan Africa, Ghana.
Academic Units: The University of Leeds > Faculty of Environment (Leeds) > Institute for Transport Studies (Leeds)
Depositing User: Sheriff Idriss-Yahya
Date Deposited: 06 Nov 2018 11:30
Last Modified: 06 Nov 2018 11:30
URI: http://etheses.whiterose.ac.uk/id/eprint/21987

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