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Title: Investigating the interactions of travel behaviour and wellbeing : mixed-methods case study of Penarth and Cardiff, Wales
Author: Mahoney, Lucy
ISNI:       0000 0004 6346 7062
Awarding Body: University of Oxford
Current Institution: University of Oxford
Date of Award: 2015
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Transport systems are essential to trade, globalisation, communication and other forms of interaction between people and societies (Banister, 2013). Yet they can also have negative impacts including decreased quality of life or health impacts arising from pollutants, environmental damage including climate change and a range of wider socio-economic effects (Glanz et al., 1990). Given that most car journeys are short however (57% of UK trips are under five miles), there is particular potential for active travel (i.e. walking and cycling) to both reduce the environmental externalities of modern transport systems and stimulate improved quality of life and societal wellbeing (Banister, 2013; Martin et al., 2014). Unfortunately, there is a paucity of robust evidence that examines how infrastructural interventions (i.e. those aimed at making the physical environment more conducive to active travel) actually impact on active travel levels in specific communities. In addition, there is very limited evidence of the wider effects that such interventions have on wellbeing and levels of happiness overtime. This thesis details mixed-method research undertaken in Cardiff, UK, during 2011/2012, which examined the impacts of a new piece of infrastructure - the Pont-y-Werin walking and cycling bridge - on the local community's levels of active travel and subjective wellbeing. It provides insights into the nature of constraints preventing travel behaviour change from taking place, and - through the use of the novel, 'Day Reconstruction Method' - into the consequences that different modes of travel can have for travel and wellbeing, including on moment-to-moment moods and emotions. Overall by contextualising and measuring and evaluating wellbeing, the research suggests that people experience less pleasant emotions during travel than when undertaking everyday activities, and also that for certain modes there is a decrease in happiness before and after travel compared to everyday activities. Additionally greater monitoring, evaluation and promotion of combined hard and soft measures - focusing on travel behaviour change - is needed alongside providing travellers with accessible information on the wellbeing impacts of different modes (Elvik, 2009).
Supervisor: Brand, Christian ; Jones, Tim Sponsor: Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: Infrastructure (Economics)--Great Britain ; Commuting--Great Britain ; Sustainable development--Wales ; Well-being--Great Britain ; Walking--Health aspects ; Cycling--Health aspects ; Cardiff (Wales)--Buildings ; structures ; etc ; Penarth (Wales)