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The Car as a Safety-Net: Narrative Accounts of the Role of Energy Intensive Transport in Conditions of Housing and Employment Uncertainty

  • Caroline Mullen
  • Greg Marsden
Chapter

Abstract

Less car travel increases prospects of limiting transport energy. Policy attempts to reduce car use by encouraging people to choose other modes face criticism that travel needs are not simply about choice but are structurally influenced, especially by urban form. Mullen and Marsden extend understanding of travel need by showing how uncertainty in housing and employment further constrains people’s control over travel, resulting in needs for complicated journeys often at short notice. Some respond to uncertainty by running a car even where this presents financial problems. Those without a vehicle face lost opportunities and hardship. In the face of increasing employment and housing precarity, policy needs to rethink focus on choice and instead find ways of meeting complex travel needs without extensive resort to cars.

Notes

Acknowledgements

This work was supported by the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council [grant number EP/K011723/1] as part of the RCUK Energy Programme and by EDF as part of the R&D ECLEER Programme.

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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Caroline Mullen
    • 1
  • Greg Marsden
    • 1
  1. 1.Institute for Transport StudiesUniversity of LeedsLeedsUK

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