PROCESSES OF CITIZEN PARTICIPATION IN THE IMPLEMENTATION OF SUSTAINABLE URBAN MOBILITY SYSTEMS


PROCESSES OF CITIZEN PARTICIPATION IN THE IMPLEMENTATION OF SUSTAINABLE URBAN MOBILITY SYSTEMS (Madrid and Sevilla)
Elisabeth Lorenzi (CIMAS- ObsInternational Centre for Citizenship and Sustainable Environment)
Our presentation aims to show a work in progress. We are a mutidisciplinar team who observe mainly the mutual influence among the citizenship’s initiatives and the policies on the field of biking mobility in Spain, comparing two cities, Madrid and Sevilla
There are many operative dimensions that have been attempted in order to improve sustainable urban mobility policies: cyclability and walkability of cities, inter-modality, reduction of speed motorized trafficaccessibility to subordinated social groups, etc. However we need to deepen into some aspects: why there are different rhythms and models applied in each city? What social and political factors are influencing sustainable urban mobility policies? What local and global consequences have these policies relating to social equand democracy? How different social groups contribute to substantive shifts in the sustainable urban mobility systems?
This research aims to answer these questions from a social sciences perspective. We adopt a participatory approach where citizen participation of multiple social agents will be taken into account as bothan object of research and a means of debating and promoting bicycling policies. Two cities, Madrid and Seville, in the period 1990-2012, will be examined. The cyclist modal split in Madrid is 0,6% in front of a 6,8% in Sevilla. However, Probici social movements are tradicionally much more active in Madrid but  the institutional support has been stronger in Sevilla.
Comparison between two cities with different achievements in terms of cyclability can provide a better understanding of the role of citizen participation within sustainable urban mobility policies. A multi-leveand transitional approach will be used: a) cycling policies are conceived as a result of four levels of action mutually interacting (urban policies, pro-bike urban movements, urban environment, and social patterns); b) transition processes from ‘automobility’ regimes to more sustainable ones are due to specific social and political factors which can ameliorate or hinder them. Finally, these multi-level interactions and transitional factors will be verified trough a participatory action-research methodology which can also open spaces for public deliberation on the issue of urban and utilitarian bicycle.


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