What Is the Role of Mothers in Transit-Oriented Development? The Case of Osaka–Kyoto–Kobe, Japan

Citation:

Waygood, E. Owen D. 2011. “What Is the Role of Mothers in Transit-Oriented Development? The Case of Osaka–Kyoto–Kobe, Japan.” In Women’s Issues in Transportation: Summary of the 4th International Conference, Vol. 2: Technical Papers, 163-78. Washington, DC: Transportation Research Board of the National Academies.

Author: E. Owen D. Waygood

Abstract:

The majority of mothers in Japan are not employed outside the home, but their role in chauffeuring and accompanying children on their trips is much less than in Western societies. Cultural expectations and the built environment in the Osaka region of Japan contribute to children as young as 10 and 11 traveling without adult accompaniment for the majority of trips. This independent travel in turn reduces the chauffeuring burden on parents. The chauffeuring of children in the United States and other Western countries is conducted mostly by mothers, but the role of mothers in the travel context of their children’s travel has not been investigated for Japan. Children ages 10 and 11, from nine different schools in varying neighborhoods, were surveyed about their travel by using a child-friendly diary. The survey results show that parents accompanied children for less than 15% of their trips on weekdays, whereas data from the United States indicate that children are accompanied by a parent on more than 65% of weekday trips they make. The average daily travel time was 40 min for children in Japan versus 72 min for their American counterparts, despite a similar number of trips per day. The paper further examines children’s trips with the accompaniment of parents, by sex of parent, by time of day and mode, and by destination. The influence of various built environment measurements and car ownership on accompaniment and the accumulated time burden on parents is also examined. This research contributes to land use planning through examining the built environment and mobility management through discussion on cultural values.

Topics: Age, Youth, Gender, Households, Infrastructure, Transportation Regions: Asia, East Asia Countries: Japan

Year: 2011

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