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The contribution of 'integrated transport studies' to the process of urban planning

By Andrew Forster


In the late 1980s and early 1990s a number of British local authorities commissioned consultants to undertake what have often been termed 'Integrated Transport Studies'. These are a variant of comprehensive transport studies which were undertaken in many British cities during the 1960s. Like their predecessors, 'Integrated Transport Studies' seek to provide policy recommendations to meet the objectives of the\ud client(s), typically over a 20 year timeframe. However, advocates of the new style of study say they differ from their predecessors by examining transport policy in its\ud wider urban context, concentrating more on broad strategy than detailed system analysis.\ud \ud \ud This thesis examines how 'Integrated Transport Studies' have been used in urban transport planning. It examines the process by which 'Integrated Transport Studies' are conducted and assesses the influence they have in particular policy settings. In doing so, it looks at how the studies interact with other influences on policy such as\ud organizational and political interests and other sources of knowledge.\ud \ud \ud Birmingham forms the main case study. In 1988 Birmingham City Council became the first local authority in Britain to commission an -'Integrated Transport Study' (known as the Birmingham Integrated Transportation Study (BITS)). The researcher was based in the Council for a year and used a qualitative research design which relied heavily on in-depth interviews with policy-makers. A short piece of analysis then compared the experiences of Birmingham with Leeds where the City Council had commissioned a broadly similar study in 1990.\ud \ud \ud The research concludes that 'Integrated Transport Studies' are rarely instrumental in bringing about new policies or resolving policy controversies. Participants in the policy process do, however, make use of studies in a number of ways including reorientating the way issues are conceptualized, using them in advocacy settings to support their existing views, or providing the basis for client organizations to work together more effectively. The research also identifies a number of issues which\ud influence how useful a study is to clients. They are grouped into three categories concerning the study design, the nature of their recommendations and the organizational context within which they are undertaken

Publisher: School of Civil Engineering (Leeds)
Year: 1995
OAI identifier: oai:etheses.whiterose.ac.uk:776

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