Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Women and transport

I can only talk about my own experience, but have you ever noticed that there are no women doing BMX (at least none that I know of) and that women road cycling is little-noticed in the public? There are hardly any female bike mechanics or frame builders too (actually Trisha already investigated that). Even among civil engineers and traffic planners are far less women than men. There are also fewer women driving buses, trams, subways and trains..

What about everyday life? I read that in Austria there are more women than men who use public transport and bikes to commute or simply walk, although generally women have more trips per day and have to carry more things (because in families there are still more women who look after the children and do the shopping). Hence women move much more complex than men and therefore have more "experience" with transportation systems.

But as I already said -- traffic planning in Austria (and probably also worldwide) is mostly done by men who drive their cars to work in the morning and back home in the evening. Can you see the discrepancy?

Some people already ask for gender mainstreaming in traffic planning. I found a nice introductory website about women and mobility: "Frauen machen schön mobil!" ("Women make lovely mobility", in English and German). Please tell me if you know more about research in that direction, I'm very much interested in that.

And to round the topic off two pictures of beautiful women cycling in Vienna :-). Keep at it and get involved!


Dottie said...

Good point! People creating our world in accordance with what's "best for us" when really they have no idea.

anna said...

Interesting Austrian magazine dealing with that topic: "Gender und Verkehr".

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