Delivering lower carbon urban transport choices: European ambition meets the reality of institutional (mis)alignment.
Laing, Richard Alexander
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GRAY, D., LAING, R. and DOCHERTY, I. 2017. Delivering lower carbon urban transport choices: European ambition meets the reality of institutional (mis)alignment. Environment and planning A [online], 49(1), pages 226-242. Available from: https://dx.doi.org/10.1177/0308518X16662272
Reducing carbon emissions from the transport sector has become a critical imperative for public policy as our understanding of the impacts of the mobility system on the environment has developed. This paper contrasts policy development in three cities (Aberdeen, Bremen and Malmö) collaborating as part of a European Union knowledge exchange programme designed to share innovative approaches to carbon reduction in the transport sector. We identify a number of critical aspects of governance, including the approach to policy formulation and implementation, and the status of consensus and cohesion, as key determinants of transport outcomes. At any particular time, the governance networks in the cities concerned could be placed at different points on a continuum of low carbon policy acceptance. We conclude that the degree of institutional alignment evident in each city's governance network is crucial in explaining their appetite for the pursuit of low carbon policies, and in turn the real potential for policy transfer to occur as envisaged by EU collaboration frameworks.