World Streets Worst Practices to star in Graz, Austria

 WS Worst Practices ostriche

– From the editor

I have been invited to give a keynote address to the Urban Futures Conference that is to take place in Graz Austria this year from 18/19 November.  As you can well imagine it is something of a big deal with power speakers pouring in from industry, academy, the consulting world and all the other solid sources on information and wisdom in our field.

You have all heard about “Best Practices”

I am sure you have. But I thought it might be an idea – particularly in a framework like this where there are people for the most part talking about their great ideas, insights and projects – if I turned things around a bit and for once shared some ideas with those present on Worst Practices, as we know and love them in our World Streets Worst Practices Department (which is joyously open to the world at https://www.facebook.com/groups/worstpractices/.   Another good name for this department might have been “Will they ever learn?”)

All that said, I would now like to INVITE YOUR NOMINATIONS for worst practices that we can then share with the world here and with the experts and others attending the Graz conference.  As those of you who come here from time to time will certainly understand, I already have something of a short list (or a long list) of candidates, which I will shortly bare here.

But for now I am more interested in YOUR nominations. Do you think we might handle it like this?

 

YOUR NOMINATION:

  • Worst Practice name or title
  • If useful, place and some concise words of background.
  • Plus if available an illustrative picture
  • Your name, affiliation if any, country.
  • And if you wish, a few lines clarifying why it’s a bad idea

 

MY EXAMPLE:

Worst Practice: Pedestrian Overpasses/Bridges on city streets

Example: George Town Malaysia (see photo). But there are thousands all over the world. (This one is locally known as the Octopus)

malaysia penang ped overpasses

Commentary: Ped overpasses (and underpasses) are always a bad idea.  There are other, better, fairer, cheaper, cleaner, prettier, faster and more environmental ways to get human beings of all ages and conditions safely to the other side of a street.  (On the other hand it is wonderful that each morning I am able to speed along in my shiny car (MY CAR) on my way to the office, without having to wait for all those pesky pedestrians.)

Contributor: Eric. Britton, World Streets, Lyon France. URL https://worldstreets.wordpress.com  Email: eric.britton@ecoplan.org.  Skype: newmobility

Grand Graz Prize

While this is not intended exactly as a competition, it seems only right that we award a prize to the nomination that brings down the house in Graz.  And while we do not normally traffic in money in World Streets, exceptionally we will set aside US $ 100.0 from our hard-fought speaker’s fee to award the outstanding nomination.  Alternatively if you prefer it to cold cash, you will receive a framed photograph of our Worst Practices Mascot (see above creature)  For the rest of the nominations, next time we meet the beer is on the editor.)

 

# # #

 

That’s it for today.  It is my intention to share these nominations both with our WSWPD and World Streets more generally.  You will also in time  find here copies of the Graz presentation.

Eric Britton
9, rue Gabillot, 69003 Lyon France

Bio: Educated as a development economist, Eric Britton is an American political scientist, teacher and international sustainability activist who has lived and worked in Paris since 1969. Professor of Sustainable Development, Economy and Democracy at the Institut Supérieur de Gestion (Paris), he is also MD of EcoPlan Association, an independent advisory network providing strategic counsel for government and business on policy and decision issues involving complex systems, social-technical change and sustainable development. Founding editor of World Streets: The Politics of Transport - https://worldstreets.wordpress.com . | Britton online: https://goo.gl/9CJXTh

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2 thoughts on “World Streets Worst Practices to star in Graz, Austria

  1. From Henrik Valeur – hv@uid.dkHi Eric,

    When I lived in Shanghai, some years ago, it was difficult to get around the city on bicycle so I asked my friend, a Chinese professor of transportation, why bicycles are banned on so many streets in Shanghai. He said that in the early 1980s, when China was still quite isolated from the rest of the world, some planners in Shanghai had read in a foreign magazine that public transportation is good and private transportation is bad. There were almost no private cars in China at that time so the planners thought they should try to get rid of the many private bicycles and have more public (and hugely polluting) buses instead. They were greatly successful!

    I guess they might also have thought that buses are a lot “smarter” than bicycles – like planners everywhere today embrace the concept of “smart cities”.

    Perhaps you can have the story verified by some other source?

    Good luck with the conference!

    Henrik

    Henrik Valeur
    hv@uid.dk
    +45 20 667 667 (DK)
    http://www.henrikvaleur.dk

    Reply

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