IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/a/gam/jsusta/v12y2020i23p10102-d455684.html
   My bibliography  Save this article

Fairness in Transport Policy: A New Approach to Applying Distributive Justice Theories

Author

Listed:
  • Edward Randal

    () (NZ Centre for Sustainable Cities, Department of Public Health, University of Otago, Wellington 6242, New Zealand)

  • Caroline Shaw

    () (Department of Public Health, University of Otago, Wellington 6242, New Zealand)

  • Alistair Woodward

    () (School of Population Health, The University of Auckland, Auckland 1142, New Zealand)

  • Philippa Howden-Chapman

    () (NZ Centre for Sustainable Cities, Department of Public Health, University of Otago, Wellington 6242, New Zealand)

  • Alex Macmillan

    () (Department of Preventive and Social Medicine, University of Otago, Dunedin 9054, New Zealand)

  • Jamie Hosking

    () (School of Population Health, The University of Auckland, Auckland 1142, New Zealand)

  • Ralph Chapman

    () (NZ Centre for Sustainable Cities, School of Geography, Environment and Earth Sciences, Victoria University of Wellington, Wellington 6140, New Zealand)

  • Andrew M. Waa

    () (Eru Pōmare Māori Health Research Centre, Department of Public Health, University of Otago, Wellington 6242, New Zealand)

  • Michael Keall

    () (NZ Centre for Sustainable Cities, Department of Public Health, University of Otago, Wellington 6242, New Zealand)

Abstract

The transport system influences everyone’s wellbeing on a daily basis. These impacts are both positive and negative and are borne directly and indirectly at a range of spatial and temporal scales and across different groups in society. Furthermore, they are often distributed unfairly and the people who are least able to use transport networks frequently bear the greatest costs. People also have various transport needs and these needs change throughout their lives. Due to these complexities, there is no straightforward answer as to how we should provide transport fairly. Policies and actions to decarbonise the transport system are urgently needed, but their equity effects are also important. We give a brief overview of distributive justice and equity in transport literature. We then develop a conceptual framework of distributive justice and a set of four principles to guide the application of the framework to transport policy. We then apply these to recent transport policies in Aotearoa/New Zealand, a country that shares common features with most highly motorised countries. We apply the Capabilities Approach to transport policy in a novel way that conceptualises transport policy as a social conversion factor which influences people’s ability to convert resources and opportunities into the things (‘beings and doings’) that they have reason to value. The consideration of transport policy as a conversion factor, rather than focusing on a specific capability, emphasises the role of transport policy as a promoter of a wide range of capabilities and highlights the inequitable distribution of positive and negative effects on people’s health and wellbeing. It also illuminates issues of power structures and procedural fairness in transport policy that are otherwise not covered by distributive justice approaches. Taking a broader view of distributive justice theory in transport provides a clearer picture of the impacts of transport on wellbeing and provides theory-based guidance on the actions to improve transport justice that can be readily integrated into existing policy institutions.

Suggested Citation

  • Edward Randal & Caroline Shaw & Alistair Woodward & Philippa Howden-Chapman & Alex Macmillan & Jamie Hosking & Ralph Chapman & Andrew M. Waa & Michael Keall, 2020. "Fairness in Transport Policy: A New Approach to Applying Distributive Justice Theories," Sustainability, MDPI, Open Access Journal, vol. 12(23), pages 1-20, December.
  • Handle: RePEc:gam:jsusta:v:12:y:2020:i:23:p:10102-:d:455684
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: https://www.mdpi.com/2071-1050/12/23/10102/pdf
    Download Restriction: no

    File URL: https://www.mdpi.com/2071-1050/12/23/10102/
    Download Restriction: no

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Hickman, Robin & Ashiru, Olu & Banister, David, 2011. "Transitions to low carbon transport futures: strategic conversations from London and Delhi," Journal of Transport Geography, Elsevier, vol. 19(6), pages 1553-1562.
    2. Amartya Sen, 2004. "Capabilities, Lists, And Public Reason: Continuing The Conversation," Feminist Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 10(3), pages 77-80.
    3. Floridea Di Ciommo & Yoram Shiftan, 2017. "Transport equity analysis," Transport Reviews, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 37(2), pages 139-151, March.
    4. Amartya Sen, 2005. "Human Rights and Capabilities," Journal of Human Development and Capabilities, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 6(2), pages 151-166.
    5. Robin Hickman & Mengqiu Cao & Beatriz Mella Lira & Alexis Fillone & Jose Bienvenido Biona, 2017. "Understanding Capabilities, Functionings and Travel in High and Low Income Neighbourhoods in Manila," Social Inclusion, Cogitatio Press, vol. 5(4), pages 161-174.
    6. David Rees & Janet Stephenson & Debbie Hopkins & Adam Doering, 2017. "Exploring stability and change in transport systems: combining Delphi and system dynamics approaches," Transportation, Springer, vol. 44(4), pages 789-805, July.
    7. Krushil Watene, 2013. "Nussbaum's Capability Approach and Future Generations," Journal of Human Development and Capabilities, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 14(1), pages 21-39, February.
    8. Ingrid Robeyns, 2005. "The Capability Approach: a theoretical survey," Journal of Human Development and Capabilities, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 6(1), pages 93-117.
    9. Vanoutrive, Thomas & Cooper, Erin, 2019. "How just is transportation justice theory? The issues of paternalism and production," Transportation Research Part A: Policy and Practice, Elsevier, vol. 122(C), pages 112-119.
    10. Ai-Thu Dang, 2014. "Amartya Sen’s Capability Approach: A Framework for Well-Being Evaluation and Policy Analysis?," Université Paris1 Panthéon-Sorbonne (Post-Print and Working Papers) halshs-01075997, HAL.
    11. Karel Martens, 2012. "Justice in transport as justice in accessibility: applying Walzer’s ‘Spheres of Justice’ to the transport sector," Transportation, Springer, vol. 39(6), pages 1035-1053, November.
    12. van Wee, Bert, 2016. "Accessible accessibility research challenges," Journal of Transport Geography, Elsevier, vol. 51(C), pages 9-16.
    13. Whitmarsh, Lorraine, 2012. "How useful is the Multi-Level Perspective for transport and sustainability research?," Journal of Transport Geography, Elsevier, vol. 24(C), pages 483-487.
    14. Alan Walks, 2015. "Stopping the 'War on the Car': Neoliberalism, Fordism, and the Politics of Automobility in Toronto," Mobilities, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 10(3), pages 402-422, July.
    15. Lucas, Karen, 2012. "Transport and social exclusion: Where are we now?," Transport Policy, Elsevier, vol. 20(C), pages 105-113.
    16. Martha Nussbaum, 2003. "Capabilities As Fundamental Entitlements: Sen And Social Justice," Feminist Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 9(2-3), pages 33-59.
    17. Abbas, Khaled A. & Bell, Michael G. H., 1994. "System dynamics applicability to transportation modeling," Transportation Research Part A: Policy and Practice, Elsevier, vol. 28(5), pages 373-390, September.
    18. Lee, R. W. & Rivasplata, C. R., 2001. "Metropolitan transportation planning in the 1990s: comparisons and contrasts in New Zealand, Chile and California," Transport Policy, Elsevier, vol. 8(1), pages 47-61, January.
    19. Christian Arndt & Jurgen Volkert, 2011. "The Capability Approach: A Framework for Official German Poverty and Wealth Reports," Journal of Human Development and Capabilities, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 12(3), pages 311-337.
    20. Martens, Karel & Golub, Aaron & Robinson, Glenn, 2012. "A justice-theoretic approach to the distribution of transportation benefits: Implications for transportation planning practice in the United States," Transportation Research Part A: Policy and Practice, Elsevier, vol. 46(4), pages 684-695.
    21. Ai-Thu Dang, 2014. "Amartya Sen's Capability Approach: A Framework for Well-Being Evaluation and Policy Analysis?," Review of Social Economy, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 72(4), pages 460-484, October.
    22. Lee, R.W. & Rivasplata, C.R., 2001. "Metropolitan Transportation Planning in the 1990s: Comparisons and Contrasts in New Zealand, Chile and California," Institute of Transportation Studies, Working Paper Series qt6sb5p14g, Institute of Transportation Studies, UC Davis.
    23. Ai-Thu Dang, 2014. "Amartya Sen’s Capability Approach: A Framework for Well-Being Evaluation and Policy Analysis?," Post-Print halshs-01075997, HAL.
    24. Ryan, Jean & Wretstrand, Anders & Schmidt, Steven M., 2015. "Exploring public transport as an element of older persons' mobility: A Capability Approach perspective," Journal of Transport Geography, Elsevier, vol. 48(C), pages 105-114.
    25. Collins, Damian C. A. & Kearns, Robin A., 2005. "Geographies of inequality: Child pedestrian injury and walking school buses in Auckland, New Zealand," Social Science & Medicine, Elsevier, vol. 60(1), pages 61-69, January.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    Most related items

    These are the items that most often cite the same works as this one and are cited by the same works as this one.
    1. Cao, Mengqiu & Hickman, Robin, 2019. "Understanding travel and differential capabilities and functionings in Beijing," Transport Policy, Elsevier, vol. 83(C), pages 46-56.
    2. Ben-Elia, Eran & Benenson, Itzhak, 2019. "A spatially-explicit method for analyzing the equity of transit commuters' accessibility," Transportation Research Part A: Policy and Practice, Elsevier, vol. 120(C), pages 31-42.
    3. Vecchio, Giovanni, 2020. "Microstories of everyday mobilities and opportunities in Bogotá: A tool for bringing capabilities into urban mobility planning," Journal of Transport Geography, Elsevier, vol. 83(C).
    4. Pereira, Rafael H.M., 2019. "Future accessibility impacts of transport policy scenarios: Equity and sensitivity to travel time thresholds for Bus Rapid Transit expansion in Rio de Janeiro," Journal of Transport Geography, Elsevier, vol. 74(C), pages 321-332.
    5. KASRI, RAHMATINA & Ahmed, Habib, 2015. "Assessing Socio-Economic Development based on Maqāṣid al-Sharīʿah Principles: Normative Frameworks, Methods and Implementation in Indonesia," Islamic Economic Studies, The Islamic Research and Training Institute (IRTI), vol. 23, pages 73-100.
    6. Antoinette Baujard & Muriel Gilardone, 2017. "Sen is not a capability theorist," Journal of Economic Methodology, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 24(1), pages 1-19, January.
    7. Gössling, Stefan, 2016. "Urban transport justice," Journal of Transport Geography, Elsevier, vol. 54(C), pages 1-9.
    8. Ulriksen, Marianne S. & Plagerson, Sophie, 2014. "Social Protection: Rethinking Rights and Duties," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 64(C), pages 755-765.
    9. Chiappero-Martinetti, Enrica & Moroni, Stefano, 2007. "An analytical framework for conceptualizing poverty and re-examining the capability approach," Journal of Behavioral and Experimental Economics (formerly The Journal of Socio-Economics), Elsevier, vol. 36(3), pages 360-375, June.
    10. Nazari Adli, Saeid & Donovan, Stuart, 2018. "Right to the city: Applying justice tests to public transport investments," Transport Policy, Elsevier, vol. 66(C), pages 56-65.
    11. Bantis, Thanos & Haworth, James, 2020. "Assessing transport related social exclusion using a capabilities approach to accessibility framework: A dynamic Bayesian network approach," Journal of Transport Geography, Elsevier, vol. 84(C).
    12. Joanna Coast, 2019. "Assessing capability in economic evaluation: a life course approach?," The European Journal of Health Economics, Springer;Deutsche Gesellschaft für Gesundheitsökonomie (DGGÖ), vol. 20(6), pages 779-784, August.
    13. Pelenc, Jérôme, 2014. "Combining the capability approach and Max-Neef’s needs approach for a better assessment of multidimensional well-being and inequalities: a case study perspective with vulnerable teenagers of the regio," MPRA Paper 66277, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    14. Van Ootegem, Luc & Spillemaeckers, Sophie, 2010. "With a focus on well-being and capabilities," Journal of Behavioral and Experimental Economics (formerly The Journal of Socio-Economics), Elsevier, vol. 39(3), pages 384-390, June.
    15. Konrad Ott, 2014. "Institutionalizing Strong Sustainability: A Rawlsian Perspective," Sustainability, MDPI, Open Access Journal, vol. 6(2), pages 1-19, February.
    16. Sun, Zhe & Zacharias, John, 2020. "Transport equity as relative accessibility in a megacity: Beijing," Transport Policy, Elsevier, vol. 92(C), pages 8-19.
    17. James Foster, Christopher Handy, 2008. "External Capabilities," OPHI Working Papers 8, Queen Elizabeth House, University of Oxford.
    18. Mohammad Abu-Zaineh & Maame Esi Woode, 2018. "Investigating the Dimensions of Youth Wellbeing: An Exploratory Structural Equation Modelling Approach Applied to Palestine," Child Indicators Research, Springer;The International Society of Child Indicators (ISCI), vol. 11(1), pages 57-78, February.
    19. Hamidi, Zahra & Camporeale, Rosalia & Caggiani, Leonardo, 2019. "Inequalities in access to bike-and-ride opportunities: Findings for the city of Malmö," Transportation Research Part A: Policy and Practice, Elsevier, vol. 130(C), pages 673-688.
    20. Golub, Aaron & Martens, Karel, 2014. "Using principles of justice to assess the modal equity of regional transportation plans," Journal of Transport Geography, Elsevier, vol. 41(C), pages 10-20.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    transport policy; capabilities approach; wellbeing; health; equity; distributive justice;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • Q - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics
    • Q0 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - General
    • Q2 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Renewable Resources and Conservation
    • Q3 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Nonrenewable Resources and Conservation
    • Q5 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Environmental Economics
    • Q56 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Environmental Economics - - - Environment and Development; Environment and Trade; Sustainability; Environmental Accounts and Accounting; Environmental Equity; Population Growth
    • O13 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - Agriculture; Natural Resources; Environment; Other Primary Products

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:gam:jsusta:v:12:y:2020:i:23:p:10102-:d:455684. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (XML Conversion Team). General contact details of provider: https://www.mdpi.com/ .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If CitEc recognized a reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.