Title

BUSSING BETWEEN HEGEMONIES: THE DOMINANT FRAME IN OXFORD'S TRANSPORT POLICIES

Document Type

Journal Article

Publication Date

2004

Subject Area

planning - marketing/promotion, mode - bus

Keywords

Transportation policy, Promotion, Policy making, Policy analysis, Oxfordshire (England), Motor bus transportation, Local transportation, Local government, Intercity bus transportation, Case studies, Bus usage, Bus travel, Bus transportation

Abstract

Thirty years ago, local transport policy in Oxford was significantly changed to focus on the promotion of bus use rather than the previous policy of providing for car use. The pro-bus policy community remained strong enough to implement a further level of bus-oriented policy in the 1990s, despite many challenges in the 1970s and 1980s. As a result, bus travel in Oxford has returned to the highest levels since the 1960s, against a national trend of declining bus use. This paper provides an overview on how bus interests were integrated into local transportation policy making, conceptualized through the notion of a dominant and distinctive policy frame. Whether the Oxford experience can be transferred to other contexts is considered. Observations suggest that three factors contribute to a policy frame becoming dominant and durable: (1) no rival framing of policy promoted by powerful interests; (2) actors must be prepared to seek and accept external validation and criticism of policy in order to maintain that dominant position in the long term; and (3) the policies developed within the frame must be sufficiently pluralistic in their aims and effects to maintain popular support and avoid backlash.

Comments

Transport Policy Home Page: http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/journal/0967070X