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Accessibility strategies beyond the private car: A study of voluntarily carless families with young children in Gothenburg

Artikel i vetenskaplig tidskrift
Författare Ellen Lagrell
Eva Thulin
Bertil Vilhelmson
Publicerad i Journal of Transport Geography
Volym 72
Nummer/häfte October 2018
Sidor 218-227
ISSN 0966-6923
Publiceringsår 2018
Publicerad vid Institutionen för ekonomi och samhälle, Kulturgeografi
Sidor 218-227
Språk en
Länkar https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jtrangeo....
Ämnesord Voluntary carlessness; Altermobilities; Accessibility strategies; Sustainability; Urban mobility; Qualitative method
Ämneskategorier Kulturgeografi

Sammanfattning

© 2018 Elsevier Ltd It is generally recognized that technological fixes alone cannot solve car-induced sustainability problems requiring measures to reduce car use. However, there is a knowledge gap concerning what we can learn from the experience of people who voluntarily refrain from car ownership. This paper aims to explore how everyday life is organized and perceived by voluntarily carless households with complex travel needs, focusing on dual-income families with children living in an urban setting (Gothenburg, Sweden). Through a time-geographical theoretical lens and drawing on eight in-depth interviews with parents, we scrutinize the accessibility strategies of these families and the perceived implications of being voluntarily carless for daily living. We find that these families use largely proximity-oriented strategies and combine various practices in managing time-pressed everyday life. The findings underscore the situatedness of carlessness and the importance of the inherent constraints and fixities of different everyday life projects. Notably, adaptation is considered to be well functioning in the spheres of mandatory activities and bounded routines (related to work, school, and consumption). Regarding free-time activities, carlessness is associated with more friction and perceived inconvenience. Questions are raised regarding the long-term persistence of voluntary carlessness, as family life situations may change. The results merit further consideration in sustainable transport and land use planning as well as regarding the wider organization of society.

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