|Title||Transitions in Motion: Accelerating Active Travel Infrastructure in London through Grassroots Groups and Activist Researchers|
Active transport plans and infrastructure transition plays a key role in reducing global greenhouse gas emissions and various health issues faced in London, yet has not occurred at a speed required for mitigation or even achieving stated targets and goals. While socio-technical transition research has often focused on the historical perspective and the technical aspects of a transition, it has dwelt less on the process of transition in motion. In particular, the role of grassroots movements in accelerating transitions and the social aspects of creating transitions. Utilising participatory action research and an adapted bridging methodology, this research aims to analyse mechanisms for speeding up active transport policy and infrastructure transitions. It intertwines three layers of bridging methodologies across policy and practice, namely the initiative-based learning (e.g. cycling campaigns), socio-technical analysis, and quantitative modelling. The initiative-based learning was enacted as participatory action research, with myself as an activist researcher, working in partnership with grassroots movements campaigning for active transport infrastructure and policy changes. The ‘Framework for Change’ is a template trialed in this research provided the practical connection to the theoretical socio-technical transition literature.
This research project highlight the opportunities and obstacles to accelerate transitions in motion specifically for grassroots movements. The empirical findings suggest that by coupling grassroots and activist researchers, it is possible to create micro-accelerations and influence urban changes towards sustainability. Further, that using the ‘Framework for Change’ can upskill activists and form a template for other campaigns. The findings also suggest that the most important parts of the Framework for Change are building coalitions, creating measurable goals and visions, and understanding who can change policy and infrastructure. My research highlights how actions and events that unfolded represent micro-accelerations or microdecelerations and can lead to better understanding of potential transition pathways and transition goals. It further highlights that grassroots’ movements have much to offer in understanding the social and political changes required for sustainable socio-technical transitions. More research into the social rather than the technical factors could speed up the pace and expand the scale of the transition required for climate change adaptation and healthy built environment outcomes.
File Access Level
Open (open metadata and files)
|Publisher||University of Westminster|
|Published||29 May 2023|
|Digital Object Identifier (DOI)||https://doi.org/10.34737/w366x|