University of Hertfordshire

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Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)53-67
Number of pages14
JournalTransportation Research Part D: Transport and Environment
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2003


Cycling is a ‘green’ alternative to commuting by car yet it makes up only a small percentage of journeys in the UK. Here we examine the commuter habits of three companies in Hertfordshire, UK. These provide contrasting case studies allowing examination of travel behaviour in relation to gender and employer travel plans. Women are known to commute shorter distances, yet are less likely to cycle. A variety of cultural and trip characteristics can account for this yet more detailed analysis reveals that some generalisations do not apply. Organisational initiatives to increase cycle commuting were perceived more positively by men than women and this suggests provision of cycling facilities in travel plans will not be effective for organisations employing a large proportion of women. However, this hides a subgroup of women who have access to a cycle and live near enough to cycle who are more positive about cycle facilities. A variety of cultural and societal constraints on cycle use are considered. Measures to encourage cycling in employer travel plans must reflect the gender balance in the organisation as well as recognised geographical and organisational factors.

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