Encounters in Motion: Considerations of Time and Social Justice in Urban Mobility Research

  • Konrad MiciukiewiczEmail author
  • Geoff Vigar
Part of the Urban and Landscape Perspectives book series (URBANLAND, volume 15)


This chapter investigates the qualities of urban travel time by looking at daily mobilities as time-spaces of social encounter. Following the ‘new mobilities paradigm’, we regard everyday urban mobility not only as a ‘means to an end’ but also as an ‘end in itself’. This implies a move from instrumental, utilitarian and deterministic understandings of travel time towards a holistic conceptualisation of urban mobility that calls for the embedding of social qualities of travel in urban planning and design. We argue that urban public transport networks are political sites of the everyday wherein emancipatory and discriminatory practices are not only enacted but also reshaped through different events, encounters and processes. Hence, we challenge traditional time-saving strategies in transport appraisal and call for a more complex and politicised approach to time in policy-making that would highlight a socially just consideration of speed, efficiency and qualitative aspects of urban travel.


Everyday mobility New mobilities paradigm Space-time use Social encounter Social qualities Urban design Urban planning 


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© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.School of Architecture, Planning and Landscape, Global Urban Research UnitNewcastle UniversityNewcastle Upon TyneUK

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