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Towards Socially Inclusive Sustainable Mobility: The Role of Social Capital in Participatory Transport Planning Processes

Elvy, Joanna Katherine (2019) Towards Socially Inclusive Sustainable Mobility: The Role of Social Capital in Participatory Transport Planning Processes. PhD thesis, University of Leeds.

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This thesis builds on complementary but fragmented literatures of socially inclusive sustainable mobility (SISM), participatory transport planning and social capital (cf. Sheller, 2011; Lucas, 2012; Naughton, 2014; Schwanen et al., 2015; and Vigar, 2017) by providing a nuanced understanding of the role of social capital in participatory transport planning processes (PTPP) for SISM. A multiple case study design (Yin, 2013) was used to select three English local authorities (Leeds, Leicester and Milton Keynes) following a preliminary online survey and feasibility interviews. Within those areas, nine case study processes were chosen including bus user groups, cycling groups, a disability group and an area forum. A constructivist grounded theoretical approach (Charmaz, 2014) was used to generate and triangulate data from 35 participant observations and 16 follow up interviews over an 18-month period. Original contributions to knowledge are provided by an analysis of the characteristics and role of social capital practices (Patulny, 2004); their impact on opportunities, uncertainties and constraints for SISM; and the lessons learned for effective PTPP. Social capital practices collectively generate productive and unproductive (Granovetter, 1973; Bourdieu, 1986; and Wilson, 1997) social capital cycles which are context specific and contain multi-dimensional linkages between the six categories of social capital practices identified (leadership, relationships and group dynamics, influence, skills and competences, social learning, and representation and representativeness). Social capital cycles can be thought of as investments in people (self and others) and two potential approaches emerged in this study: the provision of independent leadership and mediation, and the role of training and upskilling. Important lessons can be learned from this research about the ways in which transport planners and participants engage with each other, particularly in terms of the utilisation of knowledge and past experiences through social learning, and the skills and competences necessary for individuals to participate.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Keywords: social capital sustainable mobility participatory transport planning
Academic Units: The University of Leeds > Faculty of Environment (Leeds) > Institute for Transport Studies (Leeds)
Identification Number/EthosID: uk.bl.ethos.792011
Depositing User: Mrs Joanna Elvy
Date Deposited: 27 Nov 2019 12:46
Last Modified: 18 Feb 2020 12:51
URI: http://etheses.whiterose.ac.uk/id/eprint/25418

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