Children's Attitudes to Sustainable Transport

This project aims to understand the attitudes of children and young people towards sustainable transport. Sustainable transport here is understood to mean an approach to transport which supports rather than threatens a strong economy, an inclusive society and a clean environment (Scottish Executive, 1998). A particular need is to reverse the trend of increasing private car use, which has been identified as leading to congestion, reduced quality of life, environmental impacts, poor physical health and many other effects.

The attitudes and perceptions of young people towards transport in general have been reviewed in detail on a number of occasions both in Scotland and across the UK, and this review does not attempt to consider these topics again. Where relevant, the main findings of these surveys and reviews can be drawn upon to give examples of where the transport needs of young people are not met.

This report:

  • Considers influences on children's attitudes across various policy areas, and the role of education for sustainable development;
  • Reviews formal guidance in the curriculum and in guidelines provided to education professionals that may assist with delivery of sustainable transport message;
  • Considers the potential influences from the informal education sector;
  • Considers experiences from various educational approaches and from other sectors. Some of these have applicability to the concept of sustainable transport and what is being promoted within this;
  • Considers the main influences of transport attitudes and behaviour of young people;
  • Reviews a range of qualitative and quantitative data gathered in school based case studies examining attitudes of children, and their parents;
  • Synthesises the expertise of a range of experts and professionals who have been consulted on this topic;
  • Presents an analysis of overall findings;
  • Draws conclusions and make recommendations for policy-makers and practitioners.

To view the full report.

Published: December 2003