February 17, 2012

Transport Emissions, Time Use Patterns and Residential Location Choice - who is more exposed and why


Dr. Philine Gaffron, Fellow of the German Research Foundation (DFG), Project 'Urban Transport and Environmental Justice', Visiting Researcher, ITS-Davis


Environmental justice is not well established as a criterion for public decision making in Germany. However, current EU legislation has obliged local authorities to model and map emissions of noise, PM 10 and nitrogen dioxide in their administrative areas in order to assess the need for mitigation measures where legal limits are exceeded. In combination with the nascent interest in how exposure to environmental burdens differs between different groups of the population, this provides a good opportunity to look more systematically at urban transport emissions and environmental justice (EJ). Thanks to a fellowship from the German Research Foundation, I will be able to spend the next two years at UC Davis in order to study the interconnections between emissions from urban road transport, human daily activity patterns and residential location choice. My aim for this research is threefold: a) I want to learn more about the relevant tools and findings from the U.S. perspective, b) I am planning to investigate and document the transferability of these to German contexts and c) I would like to contribute to the body of research in California through the investigation of local case studies. I will present some of my work from Germany as well as my research plan for the current project. And I am hoping for the opportunity to find out in what way my research can complement other work going on at ITS in order to create synergies and identify possibilities for collaboration.

Biographical Sketch

Biographical  Sketch:  Philine Gaffron is a senior researcher at the Institute for Transport Planning and Logistics at the Hamburg University of Technology in Northern Germany. She has carried out research on planning towards sustainable urban transport, on policy implementation in the transport field and on improving freight traffic in the North Sea Region. Dr. Gaffron has been involved in a number of European research projects on these issues and she has been a member of the experts’ network STELLA – Sustainable Transport in Europe – Links and Liaisons with America. Living and working in Hamburg with its large urban port has focused her interest in the local social and environmental implications of urban transport. She has been looking at questions of urban transport and environmental justice for the past two years. In summer 2011, she came to the U.S. on a travel fellowship from the American Council on Germany to study the operationalization of environmental justice in the transport field here at different levels of decision making as well as to find out more about the status quo of research in this area. Since the beginning of 2012, Dr. Gaffron is at UC Davis on a two year sabbatical from Hamburg as a fellow of the German Research Foundation.