BETTER CHOICES: Project workbook and objectives


– – > Full Workbook content :  HERE

Better Choices In Brief:

The crux of the strategy which is explored in these pages is an understanding that by and large human beings in any part of the world are essentially change resistant. And particularly so if the perceived changes are seen as leaving them worse off in the future – and, worse yet, are being imposed by unfeeling, out of touch government bureaucrats and politicians.

And yet, obvious as that may be, one of the most striking things that we can note from transportation policies in most places in the past has been that (a) they all too often effectively offer no choices to much of the population. Or at least (b) choices which by and large perceived by the citizen as being inferior, and in particular inferior relative to getting there by car or motorcycle.

Inferior?  Waiting for a bus that shows up late in the rain is one example.  Walking a kilometer without a safe sidewalk to get to a public transit stop is another.  Public programs which make it hard to find a convenient parking place in the city, for no matter what, announced benevolent reasons, is perceived by most of us who are car dependent as an inferior choice.  Increasing the price of petrol, which makes my daily commute even more costly. A government which on the one hand may virtuously recommend bicycle use, but which, at the same time makes no real provision for safe and convenient cycling.   A ride to and from work twice a day which year after year takes more time and costs more money.  And the long list of bad choices goes on.

But given the experience in leading edge places over the last several decades, and the enormous advantages offered by new technologies and new ways of organizing ourselves, there is no good reason for public policy makers not to regroup, mobilize and create as the central thrust of transport policy to provide better choices for all.  To do this, we are going to have to mobilize ourselves under a radically different guiding strategy.  Which is what this project is all about.

The Three Pillars.

This collaborative project is organized in three main interactive parts as follows:

  • BOOK: The first book in the BETTER CHOICES series is aimed to be of help to transport planners, policy makers and others concerned with these challenges in Smaller Asian Cities.
  • LIBRARY: Second, a high quality, collaborative online library and reference source, the PLANNERS BOOKSHELF, available in working form at

 * PLATFORM: A continuing cycle of articles, op-eds, contributions and references posted to WORLD STREETS, available online at  and to continue over the full year ahead. Supported by dedicated Facebook page at

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About the author:

Eric Britton
9, rue Gabillot, 69003 Lyon France

Bio: Educated as an international development economist, Eric Britton is an American political scientist, teacher and sustainability activist who has worked on missions and advisory assignments on all continents. 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, civil society and sustainable development. Founding editor of World Streets: The Politics of Transport in Cities | See Britton online at and @ericbritton

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