Handbook on Transport and Urban Transformation in China
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Handbook on Transport and Urban Transformation in China

Edited by Chia-Lin Chen, Haixiao Pan, Qing Shen and James J. Wang

Since 1978, when China embarked on a new period of economic reforms and introduced open door policies, it has experienced a great urban transformation. The role of transport has proved indispensable in this unprecedented rapid urbanisation and economic growth. As the first research-focused book dedicated to this important topic, the Handbook on Transport and Urban Transformation in China offers new insight into the various opportunities and challenges brought by fast-paced motorization and urban development, and explores them in broad spatial-economic, environmental, social, and institutional dimensions.
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Chapter 19: Transport, social equity and capabilities in East Beijing

Mengqiu Cao and Robin Hickman


This chapter utilises the Capabilities Approach to assess different levels of social equity in relation to transport provision in East Beijing. The aim of the analysis is to explore the different levels of social equity relative to gender, age, hukou, personal income and car ownership, specifically in terms of capabilities and functionings, that is, we investigate how the perceived opportunity to travel and access activities as well as actual travel differs across population groups. East Beijing, and in particular the district of Guomao, is used as a case study, to illustrate features of a relatively wealthy area with abundant transport resources. The research analysis shows that capabilities and functionings differ according to an individual’s socio-economic characteristics. In transport planning, in China and beyond, we would argue that transport-related social inequity has been largely overlooked in developing transport systems and is not considered to any significant extent in project appraisal.

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