The Integrative Value Proposition for Telework
Chapter 4: Telework Impacts: The Societal Perspective
4. Telework impacts: the societal perspective Beyond impacts on employees and organizations, telework adoption also has broader, macro-level, societal eﬀects. Societal-level impacts are important as they inﬂuence public policy and regulations that set the framework for potential telework adoption at all three levels of analysis (employee, organizational and societal). It is also at the societal level that telework’s environmental impacts are best assessed, as such impacts are felt on a regional and even global scale. Compared with other transportation policy tools, telework has many advantages for cities and municipalities (Illegems and Verbeke, 2003). For one, telework requires relatively modest public expenditures, as the available ICT typically already accommodates telework. From a societal perspective telework beneﬁts cities by decreasing the number of vehicles using the roads. Telework’s inﬂuence on commute trip reductions will have long-, medium- and short-term impacts. These impacts include eﬀects on residential relocation, car ownership, modal splits, noncommute trips and latent demand. Telework-induced commute trip reductions can impact air pollution, road congestion, noise pollution, road accidents, energy consumption, road maintenance, new road construction and the usage of mass transit. Beyond commute trip reductions, cities and regions are also aﬀected by non-commute-related telework impacts: economic impacts, new job opportunities, community development and safety, environmental impacts beyond emission reductions, and operational continuity. The short-term, medium-term, and long-term commute-related impacts of large-scale telework adoption are depicted in Figure 4.1. These impacts are brieﬂy outlined in the following sections; further elaboration and quantiﬁcation of...
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