in OUR CAR-CRAZED CULTURE, HOW MIGHT WE ENCOURAGE COMMUTERS TO DRIVE, LESS?
We recognize the need to reduce carbon emissions. Yet, we drive, everywhere—from across the country to around the block. Case in point: According to a survey conducted by the Oxfordshire County Council (OCC), 42% of all car trips made by residents of Bicester—a growing town one-hour north of London (by car)—have a viable non-car alternative. The Designing Better Futures workshop was designed to confront this conundrum. For two days during the summer of 2011, MBAs from Saïd Business School, MSc students from Oxford’s Environmental Change Institute, MDes students from the London College of Communication (LCC) and OCC travel planners came together to contemplate: How might we intervene within an existing service ecology to cultivate more sustainable° travel practices that reduce car usage amongst employed, car owners in Bicester by 2015? Combining theories and practices from business management and sociology to geography, Designing Futures offered participants a unique framework for exploring sustainability° as a social practice. The result? A range of design° proposals that investigate, [dis]assemble, and [re]frame the everyday travel knowledge and skills; beliefs and biases; technologies and infrastructures—i.e. practices—of employed drivers in Bicester to reduce their car usage.
Designing Better Futures: Services to Change Travel Behaviors Workshop. University of Oxford Saïd Business School. Oxford, England, 2011. Led by Lucy Kimbell, Alison Prendiville, Cordula Friedlander, and Kiersten Nash with the financial support of Samsung Design Europe.
Tim Schwanen, Geographer
University of Oxford
Mark Gregory, Manager
Oxfordshire County Council
MDes Students, LCC
University of the Arts