Transportation policymaking in Chinese cities

Thursday, May 21, 2020 - 14:30 in Mathematics & Economics

In recent decades, urban populations in China’s cities have grown substantially, and rising incomes have led to a rapid expansion of car ownership. Indeed, China is now the world’s largest market for automobiles. The combination of urbanization and motorization has led to an urgent need for transportation policies to address urban problems such as congestion, air pollution, and greenhouse gas emissions. For the past three years, an MIT team led by Joanna Moody, research program manager of the MIT Energy Initiative’s Mobility Systems Center, and Jinhua Zhao, the Edward H. and Joyce Linde Associate Professor in the Department of Urban Studies and Planning (DUSP) and director of MIT’s JTL Urban Mobility Lab, has been examining transportation policy and policymaking in China. “It’s often assumed that transportation policy in China is dictated by the national government,” says Zhao. “But we’ve seen that the national government sets targets and then allows individual cities...

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