Headline: Narratives of urban mobility in Germany. On the threshold of a departure from the car-centered city?

The mobility sector poses multiple challenges for sustainable development. Its large contribution to climate change, its impacts on the local environment through noise, pollutants, and land consumption, and its ambiguous role as both a facilitator of social participation and a potential multiplier of social inequalities reveal the necessity for structural transformation. In order to gain a better understanding of the mobility transitions to come, this article takes the capability of language to construct perceptions of reality as a starting point. Building on the mobility culture framework, it employs narrative analysis to understand not only how the current mobility sector is perceived, but also what kind of future changes are envisioned in discourses on urban mobility. It does so by comparatively analyzing German daily newspapers and public events on mobility over the course of one year to illustrate that the car-centered city may be a persistent guiding principle, but transformational urban mobility narratives are increasingly emerging in public debates. These transformational narratives could ultimately lead not only to a change of discursive structures and constructed meanings, but a transformation of urban mobility culture itself.

Publication Year
2020
Publication Type
Academic Articles
Citation

Kallenbach, T. (2020). Narratives of urban mobility in Germany. On the threshold of a departure from the car-centered city? Sustainability: science, practice, & policy, 16(1), 197-207. doi:10.1080/15487733.2020.1799625.

DOI
10.1080/15487733.2020.1799625
Links
https://publications.iass-potsdam.de/rest/items/item_6000403_1/component/file_6…
Staff involved
Projects involved
Narratives and Images of Sustainability