PhD candidate position for the project ‘Social and spatial dynamics of smart cycling futures’ – Universiteit van Amsterdam

April 26, 2016

Job description

The NWO funded research project Social and spatial dynamics of smart cycling futures

Spatial and social environments mutually shape the mobility-related choices that people make. In one direction, such contexts may severely constrain people’s choices: e.g. high status of car ownership or long distances between urban functions making active forms of mobility less attractive. In the opposite direction, socio-spatial environments are also affected by these mobility choices: e.g. high cycling shares increase pressure for more finely grained location strategies for retailers or cycling role models may change specific cultural norms. These empirical and conceptual relations between social and spatial arrangements and mobility choices have been studied in the past. However, these studies systematically ignore or severely underestimate the specifics of the bicycle (i.e. its distinct speed, range, flexibility, agility, inter- activity, links with other modes). If the bicycle is mentioned, it is aggregated into ‘active modes’ or ‘non-motorized’ modes. The mature and long standing cycling tradition in the Netherlands provides a fertile base to add much-needed knowledge on this unsystematic state of affairs.

The full research programme proposal can be accessed here. This research project (Sub-project 2, on pages 28-31) aims to identify how spatial and social environments interact with individual mobility choices for or against cycling. It builds on recent cycling studies and tests more general theories on relations between mobility choices and socio-spatial characteristics. A trans- disciplinary team and research environment allows us to make use of methodological and epistemological triangulation. Furthermore, the PhD candidate will be part of a large and diverse consortium of public and private parties and as such will be actively involved in setting up and studying smart cycling innovations in four Dutch cities.

Source: PhD candidate for the project ‘Social and spatial dynamics of smart cycling futures’ – Universiteit van Amsterdam

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