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The inexorable rise of the social exclusion trend has been creating a series of issues such as that many neighborhoods have lost local shops, hospitals and health services. The same situation also happened on education. Recently, how to eliminate the detrimental effects caused by those social issues became a hot topic that needs to be tackled. Some people hold that local transport authorities and other key local stakeholders should responsible for this issue. (Lucas, 2006) Others believe accessibility planning and policy brought social exclusion trend. Under this situation, it is necessary for professors on transport analyze and illustrate the content of social exclusion to get a clear view.
There are 3 articles illustrate the factors affecting the social exclusion, which are:
Karen Lucas (2006) Providing transport for social inclusion within a framework for environmental justice in the UK, Transportation Research Part A: Policy and Practice, 40 (10), p 801-809.
This article focused on the emerging trends on transport in UK. It pointed potential barriers and challenges, risks to delivery. It offers some recommendations which based on the synergistic and integrated delivery of policies within the transport sector.
John Preston, and Fiona Rajé (2007) Accessibility, mobility and transport-related social exclusion, Journal of Transport Geography 15 (3), p 151-160.
This article demonstrated social exclusion from different point of view. It introduced social exclusion from the original terms at the beginning. Then towards to theoretical terms shows the definition by case study. According to SEU's recommendation, author refers solution of social exclusion: accessibility planning. Social-spatial schema and discussion also were also discussed in the end.
F.C. Hodgson and J Turner (2003) Participation not consumption: the need for new participatory practices to address transport and social exclusion, Transport Policy, 10 (4), p 265-272.
Article 3 introduces some theoretical debates of social exclusion. It also shows situation of transport in UK. Finally, Hodgson and Turner summarize relation of social exclusion and transport of UK. A lot of view reported in this article was cited from UK transport policy, even some point of view was not correct.
Although these 3 articles base on the same region, they focus on different angle of view and different method to approach on different purpose.
Karen Lucas tried to find out the following questions in the article: Providing transport for social inclusion within a framework for environmental justice in the UK:
In the past few years how UK citizen relied on car in daily activities.
Various loopholes brought by transport policy and land-use planning such as losing local shops, hospitals and health services, schools.
Social Exclusion Unit (abbr. SEU) study show that transport becomes to a crucial barrier for many jobseekers and has also been connected with low participation in education and college dropouts.
According to the SEU study that local transport planners got the key aims for accessibility planning.
A pilot study which used to test the decrease of social exclusion through transport interventions.
Changing on sustainable development and environmental justice caused by technology and policies.(Lucas, 2006)
She detected those problems through conducting a serious of surveys and studies. These surveys and studies used to demonstrate the links between transport and social exclusion.
SEU study plays an important role to recognize "transport and land-use policies in the UK have interactively worked to systematically create and reinforce social exclusion". (Lucas, 2006) ONS Omnibus survey explains how UK citizen rely on car within households. Mass car ownership becomes another problem which polluted local environments and meant less safe. Besides, age structure also impacts usage of private car. SEU study also made the acceptance across government that poor transport influence "moving people from welfare into work, reducing health inequalities, raising educational attainment and participation in education, crime reduction and promoting neighborhood renewal". (Lucas, 2006)
The pilot studies used to develop, test and refine the methodology for producing guidance on accessibility planning. 8 local transport authorities were chose to participate. It was also selected to represent different geographical areas. It was delivered in 5 stages. Key findings were:
"appropriateness of methodology."
"cross-sector partnership working."
"scope, cultures, skills and institutional arrangements."
"finance, resources and political will." (Lucas, 2006)
Although the purpose and the methodology of this study is great, lack of fares data and political element made this study not as perfect as expected.
In general, this paper combined many data and survey to clarify the link between transport and social exclusion. It shows responsibility of government to assume assessment of local accessibility. It also illustrated transport authorities have to deliver area-based action plans to address the issues referred by this article. Accessibility planning plays a key role in influencing factor in decision-making process in UK. "It will guarantee greater coherence between transport and other public policy objectives." (Lucas, 2006) The pilot studies demonstrated that political will is needed. "Therefore, whilst accessibility planning is a major step towards a more socially equitable system of transport delivery, it still has some way to go in ensuring that it is also an environmentally just one." (Lucas, 2006)
This paper is different from the other 2 articles. This article starts with very basic knowledge of social exclusion. Comparing with the other 2 articles, even though it used data, reference, surveys as also, the purpose of writing is different. This article just concentrates on what is the content and solution of social exclusion.
In the introduction of article, it shows how social exclusion grabs so many attentions in UK and other areas. It introduces the definition from the view of individual rather than the whole society. John and Fiona detect this through conducting a series of case studies. First one is Fieldwork on transport-related social inclusion/exclusion carry out by University of Oxford. It shows "participants were very reluctant to describe themselves as socially excluded in any way". ( Preston and Rajé, 2007) By analyzing other data, we got the conclusion that social exclusion is a process rather than an endstate.
As Preston and Rajé explained, "at least five policy responses to social exclusion by Amartya Sen's theory:
'Reduce transport costs and promote physical mobility and accessibility.'
'Increase social contacts through information technology.'
'Increase proximate facilities and contacts.'
'Increase incomes so that transport budget.'
'Increase proximate contacts by pro-family policies'."
"Policy makers should focus on ensuring basic levels of accessibility rather than mobility by author's point of view." ( Preston and Rajé, 2007)
SEU recommended the concept of accessibility planning response to transport related social exclusion in 2003. There are also many other consultants put their guidance on accessibility planning such as DHC, MVA, NERA, etc. There are 5 key stages which response to consultation exercise by DfT. "They are strategic accessibility assessment, local accessibility assessments, option appraisal, accessibility plan preparation and performance monitoring and evaluation." ( Preston and Rajé, 2007) GIS based accessibility planning tool also be referred in this section. According to the research, the view of emphasis on accessibility rather than mobility is more popular.
After the case study in the first part, three criteria were identified. Assuming each of them can take two levels, then 8 situations were discussed.
Option 1 leads by excess mobility. Road user charging should be adjusted by policy.
Option 2.Training course should be one way to deal with this situation. Another way is changing the demand of transport.
Option 3.Upgrade bus system could be slow down the process of concentrated exclusion.
Option 4 shows a process of scattered inclusion.
Option 5.Transport demand could affect the process of concentrated exclusion, such as buses, city's tram and so on.
Option 6.Traffic measures can use to curb the excesses of mobility.
Option 7.Charging used to access to central city and trunk road network should regulate.
Option 8.Low income brought this assumption. Recommendations are the same as Option 7.
In summary, the whole article reviews the social exclusion policy paradigm. It highlights the problem of the socially excluded immobile and identifies policy responses.
This article seems like a combination of the first 2 articles. The first one focuses on transport. The second concentrates on social exclusion. But this one tries to find the connection of transport and social exclusion. Similarly, Hodgson and Turner also start with basic knowledge of social exclusion in the first part of the article. Then they quoted a lot of literature point of view to demonstrate theoretical origins of social exclusion:
Social exclusion and poverty are closely related but they are distinct.
Theoretical understanding of social exclusion not only focused on material wealth but also concentrated on the important of inter-related social processes.
The former type understanding of social exclusion is isolation. In that period transport was no an influence factor of isolation.
Madanipour and other experts argued that the connection of spatial location and social exclusion is complex. By this introduction, it is easy to understand the relation between transport and social exclusion.
Recognizing the need of participation of people in societal governance process is one of the vital aspects of understanding social exclusion. (Hodgson and Turner, 2003)
In the first decade of 21st century, there are many different understanding of social exclusion in UK. One of existed policy discussed social exclusion appears to be driven by view of social inclusion. Under the circumstances, transport was considered as barriers to education and finding jobs. Accessibility planning was suggested to resolve this question. Apparently, UK transport policy developed partially in a right direction depending on "the theoretical understanding of the term social exclusion". (Hodgson and Turner, 2003) Participating in the decision-making process was still not addressed in that time. To find the right direction, UK transport sector should "develop new protocols, rules and practices for greater participation in the operation and management of the transport system". (Hodgson and Turner, 2003)
Community plans for participation which plays a key role on development of neighborhood transport. Another case study used to analyze transport planning process by local authority of UK. It shows how significant of involvement and participation in neighborhood-level transport plan. Four processes suggested as:
Giving voice used to face and resolve the problems of community. Interviewing different groups people provide a widely way to transport sector agencies.
Generating trust shorten distance between government and individual which help to approve a good performance.
Supporting organizing in the community was seen as a vital step to resolve transport problems.
Involvement in generating the solution involves residents and community groups join the publicity and consultation events. (Hodgson and Turner, 2003)
According to the above 4 views, the draft of plan was developed. As can be expected, local residents and other stakeholders involve the process to identify problems and explore solutions, the process must have met with positive outcomes in the end.
The three articles analyze various factors which could affect the social exclusion through varied methodologies and different focus. Lucas' article based on actual situation to critiques UK policies to deliver social equity and the need to reduce traffic levels on roads. Preston and Rajé's article demonstrated "a matrix of area accessibility, area mobility and individual mobility as a possible schema" to find policy response social exclusion. The last article but not least concentrates on participatory practices to address transport and social exclusion.
Evaluation and recommendation
In regards to the evaluation, each of them has their own focus, strength and drawbacks. In Hodgson and Turner's s article, I highly recommend that it should add more information about actual situation and data analysis. It is too theoretical.