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63 Womenâs Travel in Developed and Developing Countries Two Versions of the Same Story? Sandra Rosenbloom, University of Arizona Maryvonne Plessis-Fraissard, Consultant, The World Bank This paper compares womenâs travel in the developed and the developing worlds in the context of four soci- etal trends: globalization, urbanization, motorization, and sociodemographic transitions. The paper finds two versions of the same story: while women in the Global South suffer from far worse transportation problems, women around the world have less access to better transport modes and new technology; their travel pat- terns continue to differ from menâs, both because of their household and child-care roles and because of norms about womenâs appropriate travel behavior; and they face greater fear and anxiety in traveling. These differences are largely ignored or even made worse by policy responses and government programs. Womenâs travel needs and patterns can be given more traction in policy debates by encouraging researchers to recognize the underlying causes of differences in womenâs travel behavior using a mixture of qualitative and quantitative approaches, encouraging more women to enter trans- portation planning and research, and requiring policy makers to assess projects and policies in terms of their differential impacts on women and men both before and after implementation. nearly every book and many articles on bicycling at the turn of the 20th century addressed the topic of the effect of cycling on womenâs health. Both sides used medical arguments, and, as it turns out, both had a common interest in keeping women in tradi- tional roles. Those opposed to cycling argued that it was dangerous for women to expend so much of their strength on physical activity. The other line of the argument focused on sexual health and the sup- posed problematic effects of bicycle saddles. (Dill 2009) Cycling is a very common form of transport in many Asian and some African societies, but wom- enâs use of bicycles is limited. . . . Women usually have neither the purchasing power to acquire a bicycle nor, in many cases, the social acceptance of riding one. (Fernando 1999, p. 67) The parallels are striking: women in developed countries were actively discouraged from using the bicycle when it was a newly emerging tech- nology, and women in developing nations are often pre- vented from using bicycles, a means of transport that could make a meaningful difference in their lives, by societal norms or financial constraints, or both. This is not a fanciful link; feminist geographer Susan Hanson (2010) in a recent article talks about the importance of the bicycle to a noted suffragette. our review of gender and travel in developed and developing countries reveals two versions of the same story; across time and space, women often have unequal access to better transport services, display very different travel patterns, and face more fear and anxiety in travel- ing than do comparable men. These differences reflect both cultural values and norms and the heavier family and sustenance obligations that women often assume or are assigned. Yet the differences between womenâs and menâs travel patterns often have little traction in policy
64 WoMenâS ISSueS In TRAnSPoRTATIon, voluMe 1 and planning efforts; as a result, many governmental responses fail to improve the options available to women and may even widen the gap between the sexes. In the Global South, many governmental responses advantage a certain kind of mobility, by providing major roads or formal bus or rail systems, at the expense of accessibility, which could be enhanced by improving local pedestrian facilities, rural footpaths, and connections to main routes. At the same time, cultural norms may limit womenâs access to intermediate mobility modes (like bicycles and other wheeled vehicles) while government policies fail to address their personal security and safety concerns. In industrial nations, the same bias for mobil- ity over accessibility exists, but the failure of government policies to address womenâs growing dependence on the car to reach dispersed jobs and to effectively balance domestic and special needs is more far reaching. The disconnect between our knowledge about wom- enâs travel needs and patterns and public policy making results in part from the way in which research questions about travel behavior are framed and how data are col- lected and analyzed. We suggest that this situation could be improved in several ways. Researchers need to focus on the underlying causes of differences in womenâs travel behavior by using a mixture of qualitative and quantita- tive approaches. Policy makers need to assess projects and policies before and after implementation to under- stand differential impacts on women and men. More- over, more women need to enter transportation planning and to engage in travel behavior research. This paper first reviews four societal trends that affect womenâs and menâs travel. The second section summa- rizes what is known about womenâs travel patterns in both industrial nations and the Global South. The third sec- tion briefly discusses the ways in which data on womenâs travel patterns are collected and used in policy making and shows how little the knowledge base about womenâs travel in both industrial nations and the Global South affects policy making. The last section describes some ways to change the ending of these parallel stories. societal trends Four major trends have important implications for how women and men organize family life, view their daily activities, and ultimately structure their travel patterns: globalization, urbanization, motorization, and sociode- mographic transitions. Globalization Globalization is one of the most significant trends of the 21st century and has substantial implications for many facets of society. The two components of globalization with the most impact on transportation are the move- ment of manufacturing and some service sector functions from developed to developing nations and the migration of workers from poorer to wealthier countries in search of better economic opportunities. As firms and industries move from high-wage to low- wage countries, women in the latter gain new oppor- tunities for paid employment (leinbach 2000), which creates new travel needs and patterns. At the same time, the international migration of male labor means that the sending countries are challenged by a large number of families headed by women alone. new immigrants in the receiving countries increase the population and work force (Pisarski 2006), but they also bring with them their cultural values about womenâs appropriate transporta- tion behavior (Handy et al. 2008; Tal and Handy 2010). For example, in both the united States and the united Kingdom, immigrants display the largest gender gaps in driver licensing and use of the car (FHWA 2006; Rosen- bloom 2006). The loss of industrial jobs in developed nations has fueled the growth of the service economy. Women hold a disproportionate share of service sector jobs, which often pay substantially less than the manufacturing jobs they replaced (u.S. BlS 2009). Such shifts have profound transportation implications because such workers have less money to spend for transportation and often have jobs that are hard to serve with public transit or human- powered modes. Many service sector jobs are scattered across a metropolitan area rather than concentrated in employment centers, and they often have nontraditional or variable work schedules. In addition, working at night or in low-density areas can create personal security issues. All of these patterns affect womenâs travel more than menâs (Fay 2005; Rosenbloom 2006). Urbanization In 2008, the world reached a âmomentous milestoneâ (unFPA 2007): 50% of the worldâs population, or 3.3 billion people, lived in cities (ulI 2008). The transpor- tation implications are profound. In the Global South, areas undergoing urbanization provide a wide array of work opportunities that allow women gradual access to paid economic activities, and these activities change their daily travel patterns (Tannerfeldt and ljung 2006). The higher density of economic activity often makes jobs accessible by foot; cities also offer a wide variety of formal and informal transport modes, including motor- bikes, shared taxis, and informal buses of various kinds (Turner and Fouracre 1995). However, urbanization in the Global South is also associated with large and dense settlements of poor dwellers at the edges of urban areas,
65WoMenâS TRAvel In DeveloPeD AnD DeveloPInG CounTRIeS where public or private services are limited and transport resources are inadequate (Ipingbemi 2010). In developed nations, urbanization is largely com- plete, but its nature and impact differ from city to city. Many major cities in industrial countries have lost either population or jobs or both in their historic cores, while their suburban areas have grown rapidly. Increasing sub- urbanization either supports or creates a greater depen- dence on motorized vehicles; this often requires those with lower incomesâmore often womenâto endure longer commutes by slower modes or to spend a larger share of their income to maintain a car (Cox 2007; Cur- rie et al. 2009). Those lacking a car are often unable to search for a job effectively or to travel to jobs far from their home (Dobbs 2005; Blumenberg and Manville 2006; Rogalsky 2009; Baum 2009). Motorization Most nations are experiencing the rapidly growing use of motor vehicles. The first wave of motorization involves the development of formal bus systems and the growing use and ownership of basic kinds of motorized modes, such as electric bikes and three-wheeled vehicles. The next (and often overlapping) wave of motorization is the greater use of personally owned cars, vans, and trucks. Although vehicle ownership rates in poorer countries are currently substantially below those of the developed world, in the next 20 years, the number of cars in use is expected to double to more than 2 billion, with the largest share of that growth being in the Global South (Sperling and Gordon 2009). Motorization often affects men and women differ- ently. Women in the Global South are substantially less likely to have access to motorized modes of travelâ and they may be even more disadvantaged by this than women in developed nations. Many developing nations are making major investments in highways and rail sys- tems as part of their economic development strategies. Although these investments provide some transport ben- efits to some women, they rarely recognize or respond to the different transportation patterns and needs of women (Fernando and Porter 2002; Philpott 1994; Sieber 1998). Thus, government transport investments often both fail to respond to womenâs needs and widen the disparities between the sexes (GTZ 2007; Riverson et al. 2006). even in industrial nations, women are less likely to have a driverâs license or to drive even if licensed. Wom- enâs lower access to the private car is associated with diffi- culties in gaining and keeping jobs; far longer commutes, as measured in time, because of the use of slower modes; and the need to spend larger shares of their income on transportation when forced to drive (Cox 2007; Currie et al. 2009). Sociodemographic Transitions Probably the most important sociodemographic transi- tion of the past 40 years has been the growing involve- ment of women, particularly those with children, in the paid labor force. In developing countries with a tradi- tional agrarian base, most women worked without pay in the fields and fetching water, food, and fuel in addition to carrying out their child-care and household responsi- bilities. As economies slowly diversify away from subsis- tence agriculture, more women gain paid employment outside the home (leinbach 2000). Womenâs formal participation rates are not always measured well in the Global South and range widely (World Bank 2009a). In 2008, less than 25% of women were in paid employment in the Middle east and north Africa; in fact, the countries of north Africa had the larg- est gender gap in paid employment. At the same time in the countries of east Asia and the Pacific, almost 60% of women were in the paid labor force. Womenâs paid employment in industrial nations, while traditionally higher than in the Global South, has also increased significantly over the past four decades. In 1970, only 43% of all American women were in the paid labor force, compared with almost 60% by 2008 (u.S. BlS 2009, Table 2). The average female labor force par- ticipation rate in the 27 countries of the european union (eu-27) was 51.4% in 1997 but increased to almost 65% by 2009 (although there was wide variation among these countries, ranging from a low of 41% in Malta to a high of 70% in Finland and the netherlands) (Massare- lli 2010, Table 2; Ramb 2008, Table 6). Growth in all indicators of travel and motorization paralleled the rise in womenâs paid employment, because women generally add commuter trips to household maintenance trips they are already making (Pisarski 2006; Rosenbloom 2006). The second most significant sociodemographic tran- sition occurred in household structures, particularly the growing number of households headed by women alone. Household surveys in 11 African countries between 1999 and 2007 found that the percentage of such households ranged from 7% to 32%, with an average of 20% (World Bank 2009b). Household structures are changing in the developed world as well. In 2009, roughly one-third of all u.S. households were headed by a woman alone, some by mothers of young children and others by older women (u.S. Census Bureau 2009). Around the world, female-headed families have the highest poverty rates of any household type; in 2008, more than half of all u.S. female-headed households with children under age six lived below the poverty level, as did roughly 20% of those headed by a woman alone who was over age 65 (World Bank 2009a; u.S. Census Bureau 2009, Table 3). The travel patterns of these households are often very different from those of two-parent households, as single parents struggle to jug-
66 WoMenâS ISSueS In TRAnSPoRTATIon, voluMe 1 gle employment and child-care responsibilities and older people struggle to maintain their lifestyles (Rosenbloom 2006; Rosenbloom and Herbel 2009). the global south: WoMenâs travel Patterns, attitudes, and Preferences Womenâs travel patterns in general are a response to, and a result of, the state of economic development in their region and country interacting with pervasive cultural and religious norms about womenâs appropriate behavior and access to transportation resources. nowhere is that more obvious than in the Global South. The developing coun- tries that make up the Global South fall generally into three categories classified by world development indica- tors: low income, low middle income, and upper middle income. These categories are useful in understanding travel patterns because they represent distinct clusters of societal trends that affect womenâs transportation needs and pat- terns (World Bank 2009a). In almost all these countries, the differences between womenâs and menâs travel pat- terns are wider than in the industrial world and are great- est in the poorest countries (Blackden and Wodon 2006; Cao and Chai 2007; GTZ 2007). At the same time, trans- port patterns vary enormously across these countries and between rural and urban areas in the same countryâfar more so than in the industrial world. low-income countries are home to 20% of the worldâs population, or 1.3 billion people. There are 45 low-income countries, and in 2007 they had a per capita gross national income (GnI) of less than uS$935. They include mostly smaller economies such as Cambodia, Haiti, Yemen, and 33 of the 47 countries of sub-Saharan Africa. Although data about womenâs travel in such countries (and par- ticularly in urban areas) are limited (Kumar and Barrett 2007), we do know that women in rural areas engage in substantial daily travel just to conduct unpaid subsistence activities such as gathering water and fuel and tending crops. As a result, women often travel farther than men, almost entirely on foot, while carrying heavy loads that often include children born and unborn (GTZ 2007; Sie- ber 1998; World Bank 2007). The lower-middle-income countries, of which there are 54, had a 2007 per capita GnI of between uS$935 and uS$3,705. Together they contain roughly 3.5 billion people, or 52% of the worldâs population. This category includes a diverse set of countries that includes half of the countries of Asia, half of the countries of europe (such as the ukraine and Armenia), most of the small countries of Central America, the land-locked countries of South America, most of the Middle east, and some African countries with mineral resources (such as Sudan and Congo). Most of these countries are still experiencing rapid urbanization, which is creating more opportunities for women to undertake activities for pay and making some informal and occasionally formal transport options available to them. Women often carry headloads to mar- ket, mostly without affordable or accessible bus service; even when buses exist, they are crowded on market day and unfriendly to women with large or smelly loads (Rao 2001). Moreover, women are usually accompanied by children and must pay fares for them as well. The 42 upper-middle-income countries are the most affluent group of developing countries, with a 2007 per capita GnI of between uS$3,705 and uS$11,455. These countries house 823 million people, or 12% of the worldâs population. Because they are rapidly moderniz- ing and fairly urbanized, women in these countries are more likely to be in the paid labor force. Because these economies provide a favorable environment for public investments in transportation infrastructure and services, women often have more transportation choices than in poorer economies while still having travel patterns that are substantially different from those of comparable men (World Bank 2009a). Although these categories of countries are very differ- ent (as are individual countries within each category), they display some common and interrelated characteristics: â¢ Income disparities, â¢ Major differences in travel patterns, â¢ Cultural and religious norms about appropriate transport behavior, and â¢ Personal security and safety concerns. one constant that cuts across all these characteristics is womenâs greater responsibility for household mainte- nance and child care, even when they work for pay out- side their homes. Income and Poverty In the Global South, women are poorer than men, and the gaps are much greater than those in developed nations. Poverty is inextricably linked to womenâs mobility (Al- Hamad and Sera 2008; Salon and Gulyani 2010). First, low-income women, and particularly those in rural areas, are often limited to nonmotorized or informal modes. Yet most government policies give limited or no atten- tion to providing, improving, maintaining, or regulating those modes (leinbach 2000; Philpott 1994). To make matters worse, people with better transport resources can make more money. Rao (2001) found that in Jharkhand, some of the market-based foraging for wood, traditionally a female responsibility, is being taken over by men who carry produce on bikes, a mode largely unavailable to women. This further lowers the income of the women, who can no longer compete
67WoMenâS TRAvel In DeveloPeD AnD DeveloPInG CounTRIeS because they lack good transport options. Conversely, Fernando (1999) found that when women in the Indian Himalayas were given mules, they were able to use the time previously spent on foot in fuel collection for income-generating activities. Second, income and residential location are signifi- cantly related. Poor people, and particularly women, are often forced to live on the periphery of urban areas, but the negative impacts of the distance between jobs and homes fall more heavily on women (Astrop 2000). For example, after the Indian government resettled central area squatters in Delhi to peripheral areas, unemploy- ment rose 27% for women but only 5% for men. This was largely a result of malesâ greater access to faster transport modes; the time costs of the slower modes made continued employment very difficult for many women (venter et al. 2007). Third, even when improved transport options become available, cost is a key concern, as Ananya Roy (2010) noted in her keynote address. She described how, when poor women in Delhi were unable to pay railway fares, they banded together to refuse to pay. even in relatively wealthy countries such as Argentina, women are often unable to afford public transit fares (World Bank 2004). In poorer countries, such as Indonesia, women are more likely than men to use a variety of informal transport solutions because they are cheaper, even though female travelers report being dissatisfied with such services (Joe- wono and Kubota 2008; Tarigan et al. 2010). At the same time, because women working in urban areas often have both different kinds of jobs and much longer commutes than comparable men, they may be forced to spend more money on transport than compa- rable men. Women often work in the service sectorâas domestics, for exampleâin far-flung locations not well served by mass modes of transport. To get and keep those jobs, they are forced to use informal modes such as motorcycle taxis and even car taxis, although they are more expensive (and often more uncomfortable and dangerous) than formal public transport options (Kamu- handa and Schmidt 2009). Finally, because there is a strong relationship between income and social status, the less income a woman makes, the less she is in a position to bargain for access to bet- ter household modes of transport. This creates a vicious cycle: because lack of transport reduces her income potential, her social status remains too low to affect the division of transport resources in her own household (Astrop 2000). Differences in Travel Patterns Women and men in roughly comparable socioeconomic situations often have fairly different travel patterns, for a variety of reasons. First, in rural areas and in the least- developed economies, women combine personal trans- port and human portage, that is, the carrying of goods and produce to and from fields (Bryceson and Howe 1993). In rural Africa, women carry three times the load men carry (venter et al. 2007). Hilton and Greaves (2008) found that women foragers in PumÃ©, venezuela, traveled farther carrying heavier loads than comparable male foragers. Rao (2001) found that some women spent up to 10 hours per day traveling to collect water, fuel, and other forest produce and to do field work. Second, in contrast to average patterns in the indus- trial world, women who work in urban areas often spend a longer time traveling, for three interrelated reasons: the nature of their jobs, their need to combine household and child-care duties with their commutes, and their use of slower modes. In the outskirts of Calcutta, poor women who travel into the city for work spend almost 12 hours per day out of the home, including 90 minutes walking and 60 minutes just waiting for informal modes to arrive or leave (venter et al. 2007). In Tanzania, a typical woman spends 30 hours per week on transport (Fernando 1999). In Santiago, Chile, more than a quar- ter of women carry children and groceries for long, diffi- cult bus trips lasting more than 2 hours in each direction (Ballas 2009, cited in GTZ 2007). Third, women and men have different trip rates and purposes. As in the developed world, women in many (but not all) countries in the Global South take many more trips than comparable men. Anand and Tiwari (2006) concluded that womenâs greater domestic respon- sibilities, coupled with their lower access to household resources, significantly increased both the number of trips they made and the overall time spent in travel. other researchers found that women make fewer work- related trips but more trips in total than men. Womenâs trips are more frequently off peak and are more spatially concentrated (Srinivasan 2008; Srinivasan and Rogers 2005). In contrast, a study in Shenzhen, China, found that men made more out-of-home trips daily than did women (Cao and Chai 2007). Fourth, as previous discussions have suggested, women use different transport modes than men. In urban areas, women are more likely to walk or use public tran- sit and less likely to have a car because ownership and use of vehicles is often a male prerogative (venter et al. 2007). Srinivasan (2008) compared the mobility patterns of women and men in Chengdu, China, and Chennai, India. She found that women in both cities take more trips by foot and make a lower percentage of trips using any type of vehicle, including bikes, than comparable men. Women who live in places with better accessibility (i.e., shorter distances between home and various desti- nations, such that walking is possible) make more and longer trips than the average traveler.
68 WoMenâS ISSueS In TRAnSPoRTATIon, voluMe 1 Kamuhanda and Schmidt (2009) found that women are more likely to use informal modes of transport where those are cheaper. However, women are also more likely to use informal modes, even when they are not cheaper, when those options are the only effective way to get to domestic and service sector jobs. In rural areas or less- developed economies, women are less likely to use inter- mediate travel modes such as bicycles or animals. Impact of Cultural and Religious Norms Some of the differences between menâs and womenâs travel patterns in the Global South can be explained by income disparities and differences in the spatial distribu- tion of the industries and jobs in which women work. not all differences between the sexes can be explained by socioeconomic and spatial factors, however, and these variables themselves, as well as womenâs travel patterns, are inextricably linked to societal norms and values about womenâs traveling outside the home at all and about their use of certain (usually superior) travel modes (Cunha 2006). In several countries that are predominantly, but not exclusively, Muslim, law and custom restrict the abil- ity of women to work or travel outside the home. As a result, women in these countries make fewer trips, trip- chain less, spend less time traveling, make fewer stops, and stay a shorter time at each stop than comparable men. Men predominantly travel by private vehicle, and women mostly walk. Few women use public transit. one study found that one in six Arab women never leave home on a given day, compared with only one in 30 men (Wafa et al. 2008). In other countries, there are significant barriers to women adopting new technology or certain modes. Bryceson and Howe (1993) found that women were far less likely to adopt new technologies (e.g., handcarts or motorbikes) because they were significantly affected by cultural norms that held that the use of such modes was not proper behavior for women. In uganda, very few women would use bicycles offered for free because they were fearful of being seen as being too liberated or act- ing like men. In a similar vein, a project in Sri lanka that gave away bicycles had no impact on womenâs mobility because women could not or would not use them. As Fernando (1999, p. 74) notes, âWomenâs ability to ben- efit from interventions depends on the appropriateness of the alternatives introduced and on the method of their dissemination. It is vital to understand womenâs trans- port needs and the social, economic and cultural factors that facilitate or obstruct womenâs ability to acquire and/ or use new technology.â He found that a Tanzanian gov- ernment program that gave women wheelbarrows was a failure because women believed that the vehicles were designed for men to use in construction (they were also difficult for one person with many children to load) (Fer- nando, 1999). leinbach (2000, p. 5) argues that international aid agencies are unwilling to challenge the cultural norms that keep women from adopting new technologies: âInternational agencies have been reluctant to challenge the âcultural preferences of communitiesâ even though these preferences give rise to gross inequities between the sexes.â Personal Security and Safety Concerns Fear of crime, assault, robbery, or harassment consti- tutes a major mobility problem for women in the Global South (Buvinic et al. 1999). Seedat et al. (2006) found that in India and certain countries of South Asia, sexual harassment by a lone man or gangs of menââeve teas- ing,â as described by Mitra-Sarkar and Partheeban at this conferenceâis common in public places (Mitra- Sarkar and Partheeban in press). This unwelcome behavior includes lascivious stares, suggestive and lewd remarks, and menâs attempts to make physical contact. As a result, women report intense mistrust, fear, help- lessness, humiliation, and a sense of being objectified; their mobility is compromised. Anand and Tiwari (2006) found that women often were targets of sexual harassment while walking or riding public transit; this situation was exacerbated by inadequate lighting and small, lonely paths connecting where they lived to bus stops. Women reported that they preferred to travel with males or in groups, but âmost have a resigned acceptance of these daily inci- dents of sexual harassment. The nature of the entire transportation system of the city is then not only insen- sitive to the needs of women, but also actively disables accessibility and induces povertyâ (Anand and Tiwari 2006, p. 78). Women in the Global South also have safety concerns (Tarigan et al. 2010). As pedestrians, they fear falling on poorly maintained roads or footpaths, or losing their loads, or being hit by motorized vehicles (Mockus 2001; Seedat et al. 2006). In addition, walking in urban areas is frequently seen as extremely stressful as well as physi- cally tiring; women reported concerns about overcrowd- ing, congestion, noise and air-pollution, and unhygienic conditions (spitting and littering). Anand and Tiwari (2006) contend that these problems arise from the lack of adequate pedestrian infrastructure on busy roads, non- existent or badly designed pedestrian crossings, the poor location of bus stops and shelters, and high entry steps on buses. The failure of the public sector to address these issues contributes to a system that is âoutright hostileâ to women (Anand and Tiwari 2006, p. 78).
69WoMenâS TRAvel In DeveloPeD AnD DeveloPInG CounTRIeS develoPing countries: WoMenâs travel Patterns, attitudes, and Preferences Although few women in industrial nations face anything like the deprivation of women in developing countries, there are strong parallels that can also be discussed in terms of the same characteristics: â¢ Income disparities, â¢ Major differences in travel patterns, â¢ Cultural and religious norms about appropriate transport behavior, and â¢ Personal security and safety concerns. Because several papers given at the conference address both personal security and safety issues in industrial nations, that topic will not be raised here. As in the Global South, however, a factor that cuts across all of these char- acteristics is womenâs greater responsibility for household maintenance and child care, even if those duties play out differently than in less advantaged economies. Income Disparities overall, women in developed nations make less money than men; households headed by women make substan- tially less than two-parent households or those headed by men. In 2007, u.S. women in all industries working full-time annually made 77 cents for every dollar made by men. The gender gap in earnings was generally worse in some industries than in others; for example, u.S. women working full time in the health diagnosis field made only 59 cents for every dollar made by men in that industry (u.S. Census Bureau 2008). In 2008, women in the eu-27 made 18% less per hour (gross) than men (DuprÃ© 2010). As in the Global South, lower incomes are associated with less access to better modes of transport, notably private cars. There is a large literature on the impact of access to a car on the ability of women, particularly low-skilled workers, to obtain or keep jobs. A number of studies have shown that ownership of or access to a car is related to better employment outcomes for women, including higher incomes, for a variety of reasons (Baum 2009; Cervero et al. 2002; ong 1996 and 2002; Rogal- sky 2009). Cressell and uteng (2008) report that immi- grant women in norway said that access to good jobs was only possible for those who had a car. A study in the northeast of england (Dobbs 2005) concluded that access to private transport is a key factor in determining womenâs economic inclusion. lacking a car restricts the initial job search, and employ- ers are known to discriminate against applicants without cars. even in europe, public transport can be inadequate or nonexistent in the locations where most jobs exist or may not match the employment schedules of many service jobs (Dobbs 2005; Cressell and uteng 2008). It is also difficult to balance domestic and employment obligations using a mode other than the car (Blumenberg and Man- ville 2006; Crane 2007; Rosenbloom 2006). Almost every study in the united States, europe, and Australia has found that poor women do not have a job because they do not have a car, and not the other way around. Thus, as in the Global South, limited access to better transportation options creates a vicious cycle. Moreover, poor women face difficulties in using public transportation, even when it matches their needs. Poor people are less likely to be able to buy monthly tran- sit passes and must pay daily transit fares at full price. Women also have to pay for their children as well. Differences in Travel Patterns Mode of Travel Throughout the industrial world, women have become more reliant on the private car, as seen in both their increased licensing rates and actual driving experience. In the united States, more than 90% of all women had a driverâs license in 2007, compared with half that propor- tion only three decades earlier. In 2006, for the first time in the nationâs driving history, more of the licensed drivers on u.S. highways were women than men (FHWA 2010, Table Dl-20: licensed Drivers by Percentage and Sex in each Age Group). Although the percentage of women with licenses is less in most other industrial countries, the pattern of growth has been the same. overall, the gender gap in auto use between women and men is diminishing greatly in most industrial countries, although there are wide variations. on the other hand, the gender gap is far from gone; moreover, having a license is not equivalent to driving. McGuckin et al.âs paper for this conference shows that when women and men ride together in a car, men are driving 80% of the time, regardless of the age of the trav- elers or the licensing status of the woman (McGuckin et al. in press). Rosenbloom (2006) found that women drivers were far less likely to be driving the car in which they were riding than were male drivers of any age. In norway, Hjorthol (2008) used a conservative mea- sure of access to transportation resources, combining people with a full driverâs license and continuous access to a car. Few changes in this joint measure of motor- ization were evident from 1992 to 2005. Roughly 57% of women and 80% of men said that they have both a license and continuous access to a car; however, because licensing rates did go up substantially for norwegian women during this 13-year period, the data actually
70 WoMenâS ISSueS In TRAnSPoRTATIon, voluMe 1 show that licensed women have relatively less access to a car than in the past, even though they were more likely to be licensed. Most research also shows that in developed countries, while women are increasingly licensed to drive and are more dependent on the private car than ever before, a gender gap in mode choice still remains (Rosenbloom 2006). naess (2008) found that salaried women in Copenhagen were less likely to use the car and more likely to cycle or walk to work than men, regardless of where they worked. In Tel Aviv, although driving is the dominant commuting mode, more men drive to work than women (54% versus 33%, respectively) (Prashker et al. 2008). Given this paperâs early focus on the bicycle, it is interesting to briefly examine its use by women today. Bicycle use among women is far higher in europe than in the united States, where, as Catherine emondâs paper for this conference indicates, there are structural and environmental barriers to women cycling (emond, in press). Cycling rates among both women and men have traditionally been the highest in the netherlands, in part because of cultural norms and structural support for the mode (Pucher and Buehler 2007). As the Dutch paper for this conference indicates, however, cycling use has dropped by 10 percentage points among women in just the past few years, probably because of the difficulty of combining child care and domestic obligations with employment (Kalter et al. in press). Swedish research shows that cultural values still have a lot to do with the adoption of bicycles; among immigrants to Sweden, few men but more than one-third of women reported not knowing how to use a bicycle or feeling unsafe doing so (lewin et al. 2006). Commute Trip Length Almost all research shows that in countries ranging from the united States to the united Kingdom and from Swe- den, norway, and Denmark to Italy, women commute shorter distances than men, even when other sociode- mographic variables, such as income, are controlled for (Cristaldi 2005; Susilo and Kitamura 2008). Several researchers have concluded this gap might be closing, however, as women commute more often by car than men (see Crane 2007 for a review of this literature). Weinberger (2007) concludes that as women gain better- paid jobs that formerly were available only to men, work trip lengths may converge. Several researchers have found wide differences by race and ethnicity, sometimes obscured by aggregate numbers. For example, single mothers and women of color sometimes have much longer home-to-work trips in the united States than do white women and their male counterparts (see Rosenbloom 2006 for a summary of this research). Some researchers have concluded that almost all gender differences in u.S. commute times dis- appear when race, sex, age, and mode are controlled for (Doyle and Taylor 2000; Taylor and Mauch 2000; Blu- menberg and ong 2001). Crane (2007) directly addressed the contention that averages were hiding convergence among white non- Hispanic women and men. Crane found statistically sig- nificant gender differences in commute distance for all racial and ethnic groups, including whites, in both 1985 and 2004, but only for auto users. He ultimately con- cludes that even when race and ethnicity are controlled for, gender remains a significant independent influence on commute behavior: Put another way, those data indicate that the gender gap extends across differences in income, marital status, age, housing tenure, parenthood, and loca- tion within metropolitan area, and perhaps across occupations as well. . . . The gap appears rather pervasive through two decades, rather than being limited to White women, women with children, or to earlier years only. (Crane 2007, p. 309) Cristaldi (2005) reported that, consistent with the international literature, Italian women do have shorter commutes. She noted, however, that average numbers hide wide variations in commute distances; however, although womenâs commutes varied with several socio- demographic variables, menâs did not. She concluded that (a) the relationships between socioeconomic char- acteristics and commuting are substantially different for women and men, (b) these relationships are in turn related to the economic structure and geographic context of different regional labor markets, and (c) analysts must be sensitive to context when interpreting gender differ- ences in commuting. An interesting issue not directly addressed by many researchers is why substantial gender differences in mode choice and commute length exist between different eth- nic and racial groups. Given that so-called minorities are becoming a larger portion of the population of many developed countries and will soon make up a majority of the u.S. population, the substantial gender differences in travel patterns among such groups raise major policy and planning questions that should not be lost. Complicated Trip Patterns A wide body of research suggests that women have far more complicated travel patterns than comparable men and that these patterns reflect their need to balance household responsibilities with employment, spatial
71WoMenâS TRAvel In DeveloPeD AnD DeveloPInG CounTRIeS variations in the industries in which women are over- represented, spatial entrapment in highly localized labor markets, lower access to cars even if they are licensed to drive, and the temporal and spatial parameters of social institutions (e.g., opening and closing hours) (Hjorthol 2008; lyons and Chatterjee 2008; MacDonald 1999; Pazy et al. 1996; Prashker et al. 2008; Sandow 2008; see Dargay and Hanly 2007 for a contrasting view). Hjorthol (2008) examined changes over 20 years in the travel patterns of norwegian women and men and concluded that womenâs continued shorter commutes could be explained in terms of persistent gender roles. She concluded that marital status and the number or age of children had an impact on womenâs commuting but not on that of men. Married women with the most chil- dren had the shortest commutes of all commuters. Menâs commutes were not affected by the number and age of their children (see also Hanson and Pratt 1995). San- dow (2008) found similar patterns; he concluded that living with a spouse and the presence of school-aged chil- dren decreased womenâs propensity to commute farther. Menâs commutes were affected only if they had children not yet in school. naess (2008) found that Danish women choose what he terms âlocal employment,â while men choose jobs from the entire metropolitan region; he attributes these choices to womenâs lack of access to a car and the pressure of family responsibilities. Yet even in two-car households in Copenhagen, he found substantial com- mute differences between women and men. The average commuting distance of men in two-car households in the suburbs was double that of men in one-car households. Womenâs commutes did not increase significantly with an additional household car. naess concluded that hav- ing two cars lets men commute longer because they donât have to negotiate with their wives over the use of the car; women in such households use the additional car to save time on the work trips that they were already making. In addition to having shorter commutes, women also more often link other trips to their work commutes, for example, to drop off or pick up children at school, day- care, or recreational activities or to conduct household duties such as shopping (Donaghy et al. 2004; McGu- ckin and nakamoto 2005; McGuckin et al. 2005). lyons and Chatterjee (2008) found that in the united Kingdom, men have substantially longer commutes than women because womenâs domestic responsibilities have to be organized around commuting. Women were almost twice as likely to trip-chain for shopping, chauffeuring, or social activities. Rosenbloomâs (2006) analysis of womenâs and menâs 2001 trip patterns in the united States found that in all life cycles, women made more shopping trips and more chauffeuring (âserve passengerâ) trips than comparable men. Salaried married women with children made twice as many serve passenger trips as comparable men. If the data are adjusted to remove âreturning homeâ as a trip purpose, married women in the paid labor force with chil- dren under age 15 made one of five trips to take someone somewhere they themselves did not need to be. Hjorthol (2008) also found that the incidence of norwegian children being chauffeured to some activ- ity increased by 60% during the 1990s, with mothers far more likely to be the escort than fathers. Schwanen (2007) observed similar patterns in the netherlands: the more hours the father worked, the more likely the mother was to chauffeur children; however, the motherâs work hours were negatively correlated with the father chauf- feuring children! Schwanen concluded that women with more responsible jobs had a greater ability to alter their schedules to provide transportation for their children. He also found that organizing the chauffeuring duties was considered the motherâs responsibility, even if she was not conducting the trip. Cultural Norms and Values In most industrial countries, womenâs travel patterns dif- fer, sometimes significantly, from menâs overall and often from those of men in similar situations. This dichotomy begins early; a substantial literature suggests that young girls report being more fearful when walking about their neighborhoods. This may be the cause or the result of the fact that parents treat the mobility needs of daugh- ters and sons differently, with sons often permitted to travel farther from home at much younger ages than are daughters. In contrast, parents chauffeur girls far more than boys or prevent them from leaving home at all for social and recreational activities when it is not possible to accompany or chauffeur them (McMillan et al. 2006; Yeung et al. 2008). norms about childrenâs travel are also highly corre- lated with norms about parental roles. Hjorthol (2008) found that as more norwegian women entered the labor force, housekeeping roles and standards changed; house- holds relaxed their cleanliness standards and purchased more prepared foods. Men increased the amount of housework they did by a total of 15 minutes per day over the past 30 years (an average annual increase of 30 seconds). What was true of housekeeping was not true of parenting standards, however. She found that The norms related to parenting or mothering have changed little, when time use is the measurement. The focus on children in norwegian society is sig- nificant. Giving children âquality time,â engage- ment in their leisure activities and providing the best opportunities are examples [of the duties of moth- ers, employed or not]. (Hjorthol 2008, p. 198)
72 WoMenâS ISSueS In TRAnSPoRTATIon, voluMe 1 She concluded that in 2005, as in 1992, Women to a greater extent than men still have the main responsibility for the âmanagementâ of the household, a fact that is amply demonstrated by both time use studies and the elucidation of wom- enâs reasons for daily travel and mobility. As long as the distribution of tasks between genders within a household is maintained, the differences will also be reflected in travel patterns. (Hjorthol 2008, p. 205) Schwanenâs (2007) qualitative research showed that mothers continually challenged themselves about their parenting duties, whereas fathers clearly did not. He felt these differences reflected âcomplex moral rationali- ties about parenting that simultaneously challenge and reproduce traditional patriarchal relationsâ (Schwanen 2007, p. 456). investigating WoMenâs travel and translating it into Policies and PrograMs The knowledge base on womenâs travel has had, and continues to have, little impact on decision making in both industrial nations and the Global South. This situa- tion is largely the result of the ways in which research is conducted and of the kinds of information on household travel that are gathered. In particular, the transporta- tion models on which many infrastructure decisions are based operate with very limited and simplified data on peopleâs travel patterns; moreover, they favor quantita- tive over qualitative data, even when the former are not useful in answering a variety of policy questions (Rosen- bloom 2006; TRB 2007). Most of what we know about womenâs and menâs travel patterns comes from household surveys used to support travel demand modeling; travel demand model- ing in turn is designed primarily to address the conges- tion created by commuting travel. Thus, a substantial amount of research on womenâs travel focuses on com- muting (Crane 2007; Schwanen 2007). In many ways, this limited focus and the quantitative nature of the data collected either miss or mischaracterize important travel differences by gender (Schwanen 2007). Many developing nations use the same approach to planning infrastructure projects as the developed econo- mies use. They collect a limited amount of travel data (often at great expense) and use the information to deter- mine where to build major infrastructure. These efforts assume no important differences between womenâs and menâs travel needs or patterns, or none that are not eas- ily explained by income or employment, as opposed to cultural and religious norms and values. Both by design and through the ways in which those data are used, these efforts focus largely on building major roadways or for- mal transit systems, ignoring the crucial role of walk- ing and informal nonmotorized and motorized modes in womenâs travel patterns (Riverson and Carapetis 1991; Turner et al. 1996). Thus, these processes inherently neglect womenâs needs in the Global South, and argu- ably in the developed world. Although some analysts believe that quantitative data are more âobjectiveâ than other forms of information, what can be quantified is not always the best informa- tion on peopleâs attitudes, needs, and preferences (Rosen- bloom 2006). For example, quantitative data yield little insight into the role of personal security and safety con- cerns in travel choices. Stern and Richardson (2005) assert that this is because most models do not have a âcognitive explanatory mechanismâ of individual choice processes, which often vary by gender. In addition, mea- suring behavior often fails to address the extent to which observed patterns reflect what people want to do as opposed to what they are able to do given the constraints they face (Hanson 2010). law (1999) suggests that to address that question, researchers must consider gender differences in access to resources, personal identity, cul- tural systems of meaning, and power relationships. For example, in the Global South, the public sector often fails to provide or repair footpaths so that women pedestrians can more easily carry produce or firewood or use wheeled vehicles, such as carts or hand trucks, to transport their own children and/or agricultural and other products (Rao 2001; Sieber 1998). As loukatou- Sideris (2010) shows, many aspects of neighborhoods in the united States create barriers and impediments to women pedestrians and cyclists. There are important commonalities in the planning problems experienced both in the Global South and in developed countries. Bryceson and Howe (1993) suggest that most data are not disaggregated enough to under- stand womenâs travel patterns and constraints in the Global South. Fouracre et al. (2006) note that the models underlying these efforts assume travelers make decisions based on economic trade-offs between time and money; this may not even be true in the industrial world and can be easily challenged in the Global South (Kamuhanda and Schmidt 2009). Substantial research suggests that in the developing nations, many households are relatively unresponsive to price and are especially unconcerned with the time or money costs incurred by female mem- bers of the household. These criticisms parallel those made about current transportation planning methods in the united States (TRB 2007). For example, in both the Global South and the developed world, formal data collection and modeling approaches fail to identify cultural and personal issues that have significant impact on travel needs. In the Global South they ignore how well new transport tech-
73WoMenâS TRAvel In DeveloPeD AnD DeveloPInG CounTRIeS nologies are accepted or the cultural barriers to women traveling at certain times, by certain modes, or to cer- tain places (Rwebangira 2001; Seedat et al. 2006; Srini- vasan 2008; Turner and Kwakye 1996; Weinert et al. 2007). Although the cultural constraints on women in industrial nations are far less severe (and obvious) than in the Global South, traditional transportation planning approaches ignore differential norms by sex about par- enting (and elder care) that have a significant impact on womenâs travel. Womenâs greater anxiety in traveling and fear for their personal security are relatively ignored in both sectors of the world. suMMary and conclusions Four major societal trends have profound transporta- tion implications for women and men, and their families, around the world: globalization, urbanization, motor- ization, and sociodemographic transitions. each creates new opportunities for economic growth and develop- ment in many countries while simultaneously throwing up barriers to womenâs mobility. examining womenâs travel patterns in the industrial- ized world and the Global South reveals two versions of the same story in countries around the world. Women, regardless of the level of economic development in their community or nation, have less access to better or faster transportation resources, display different and more complicated travel patterns, and are more influenced by fear of attack or harassment than are comparable men. These gender differences are a complex response to dif- ferential economic resources and societal norms about the use of transport modes as well as to household and child-care constraints, which themselves are embedded in a web of cultural attitudes and societal norms. Gender differences are starkest in the developing world because womenâs opportunities for paid employment are less and their social status is so much lower than that of compa- rable men; however, the parallels are many and strong. overall, âmainstreamâ research, data collection efforts, and the planning decisions based on them in both developing and developed nations â¢ Do not recognize or measure many gender differ- ences in travel patterns and needs; â¢ Do not fully engage the question of why there are gender differences in travel, particularly those that are not captured by or explained by traditional socioeco- nomic variables (alone or all); and â¢ Rarely question why traditional socioeconomic variables that are linked to gender differences in travel behaviorâsuch as lower income or the lack of a driverâs license or access to motorized optionsâare so intensely gendered in the first place. Critically, womenâs issues have little traction in trans- portation policy making, which creates a cascade of missed opportunities. Women in developing countries are often shut out economically or culturally from the technological improvements in transportation that are available to men. Most governmental responses in the Global South favor mobility over accessibilityâthat is, the provision of major roads from one urban area to another, rail transit systems in urban areas, and bus- based public transit outside those areas while often ignoring the need to improve pedestrian facilities, paths, and all-weather roads in informal urban settlements or rural areas and to increase the accessibility so needed by women. overall, many transportation improvements in developing nations not only fail to meet womenâs trans- port needs adequately, but they often contribute to wid- ening the gender gap in quality of life. The same shortcomings are found in planning efforts in the developed world. Transportation and related housing and land use policies have long favored mobil- ity over accessibility and motorized modes over human- powered ones. Few workers can walk or cycle to work in most cities. Public transit services tend to serve major employment sites and provide poor access to the far- flung suburban jobs to which women more often travel; public transit options are often unavailable late at night or early in the morning when needed by many women service workers. When available, transit may not address womenâs personal security issues. Inadequate transit access and the need to balance household responsibilities with employment create the need for even low-income women to invest a large share of their income in owning and operating a car in north America and, increasingly, around the developed world. How can we address these deficiencies and write a differ- ent ending to the story of womenâs travel patterns in both the developed and developing world? At the policy level, we can require public projects to conduct gender-specific analyses of the costs and benefits of public expenditures and policies. We can also continue to encourage more women to enter the transportation planning and research fields, in part by promoting gender equity in employment, but also by making women aware of the important human dimensions of transportation. At the project level, we can require the inclusion of gender indicators in transport project design, a gender-based disaggregated beneficiary assessment, and follow-up monitoring. We can challenge the resistance among researchers to evaluating travel patterns by gender and their reluctance to develop mixed methods of assessing the impact of the unequal distribution of resources and power that cre- ate those disparities. We can do this by telling the story clearly, thereby also helping women in the developing world. For it is hard to hear the story of womenâs almost insurmountable transportation barriers in the Global
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