Book Chapter

The potential for public participation in planning healthy urban mobility : the case of Oxford, United Kingdom


This chapter explores the potential for involving the public in planning healthy urban mobility using a case study of two neighbourhoods in Oxford, UK. We draw specifically on lessons learned from the UK case of a large-scale international study entitled Healthy Urban Mobility (HUM). The HUM project was based on the need to address health inequalities within urban areas by implementing new approaches to planning and health that use novel research methods to encourage active dialogue with a wide range of stakeholders. The two principal objectives of the research were firstly, to understand the impact of everyday (im)mobility on health and wellbeing within different social groups, and secondly, to explore the potential for participatory mobilities planning with local communities to support and develop solutions for healthy urban mobility. The chapter is organised into six parts. Following the introduction, we highlight the theories behind the need for public participation in urban mobility planning and calls for active dialogue and mutual learning between practitioners and communities for effective action on improving urban health. Then in the third and fourth parts, we provide an overview of the approach to participatory mobilities planning with local communities in the UK as part of the HUM project. In the fifth part, we report the outcomes of the project and critically reflect on the overall approach and lessons learned that may be of use to practitioners and communities. Finally, we conclude with the significance of the study and implications for public participation in planning healthy urban mobility. The research demonstrates the significant potential of participatory methods in transport infrastructure project but also highlights the complexities of public engagement and points to the need for a continual, long-term process to build trust between partners.

Attached files


Spencer, Ben
Jones, Tim
Carpenter, Juliet
Brownill, Susan

Oxford Brookes departments

School of the Built Environment


Year of publication: 2023
Date of RADAR deposit: 2022-07-06

Creative Commons License This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License

Related resources

This RADAR resource is the Accepted Manuscript of The potential for public participation in planning healthy urban mobility: The case of Oxford, United Kingdom
This RADAR resource is Part of Public participation in transport in times of change [ISBN: 9781804550380] / edited by Lisa Hansson, Claus Hedegaard Sørensen, Tom Rye (Emerald, 2023).


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