Travel Behavior, Transport Policy, and Sustainable Transport in Germany and the USA

February 21, 2012

Reliance on the automobile for most trips contributes to costly trends like pollution, oil dependence, congestion, and obesity. Germany and the U.S. have among the highest motorization rates in the world. Yet Germans make a four times higher share of trips by foot, bike, and public transport and drive for a 25 percent lower share of trips.

This presentation investigated daily travel behavior in the two countries and then examined the transport and land-use policies in Germany over the last 40 years that have encouraged more walking, bicycling, and public transport use.

Using a case study of policy changes in the German city of Freiburg, Ralph Buehler identified policies that are transferable to car-oriented countries around the world.

PowerPoint presentation (ppt)

PDF of PowerPoint presentation (pdf)

Ralph Buehler

Ralph Buehler

Ralph Buehler's research interests fall into three areas: the influence of transport policy, land use, socio-demographics on travel behavior; bicycling, walking, and public health; and public transport demand, supply, and financial efficiency. Most of his research has an international perspective, contrasting transport and land-use policies, systems, and travel behavior in Western Europe and North America. A native of Germany, he has research and work experience in his home country, the UK, France, and the U.S. Buehler holds a PhD in Planning and Public Policy and a Master's of City and Regional Studies from Rutgers University, as well as a Master's in Politics and Management from the University of Konstanz, Germany. His dissertation was honored with the "Barclay Gibbs Jones Award for Best Dissertation in Planning 2008" by the Association of Collegiate Schools of Planning (ACSP).