Transport is critical for growing economies, overcoming poverty and ensuring people access vital services such as healthcare and education. Yet in recent years we’ve seen infrastructures buckle under intense pressures such as the COVID-19 pandemic and climate change, particularly in low- and middle-income countries (LMICs.) To meet these challenges, we need to think and act differently.
This Transport-Technology Research and Innovation for International Development (T-TRIID) funding sees businesses, institutions and universities explore ideas and concepts that could hold the key to unlocking sustainable, safer, greener and inclusive transport.
T-TRIID is a part of the High Volume Transport Applied Research Programme (HVT), funded by UK Aid, and managed by DT Global, which undertakes research into sustainable transport development in LMICs across Africa and South Asia.
1) Inclusive interchanges
Vectos (South) Limited
The poor level of integration of formal and informal public transport services and interchanges in Sub-Saharan Africa (SSA) results in sub-optimal performance. This research will develop a new inclusive interchange design brief for SSA cities, using Lagos, Nigeria, as a pilot site. The brief will support transport and urban planning authorities to improve interchange design incorporating new technologies leading to mobility, economic, environmental and social benefits. The team from Vectos (South) Limited will work closely with the Lagos Metropolitan Area Transport Authority (LAMATA) to carry out extensive case study research.
2) Autosafety Uganda,
Wanyama Autosafety Initiatives
There are over two million vehicles in Uganda with an average age of 15 or more years. Most of these are used imports, running on poor roads, and subject to no inspections. The majority of vehicle mechanics work in makeshift settings with inappropriate tools and a lack of skills, highly compromising safety and emission controls. This project will establish a structured vehicle maintenance regime, collecting safety and emissions data to support policy reforms and community capacity building.
3) Computer vision for public transport
Integrated Transport Planning Limited (ITP)
Many local governments in low- and middle-income countries (LMICs) face challenges managing their transport systems which results in insufficient infrastructure. These challenges are exacerbated by a lack of good data. ITP is developing a data collection tool that uses computer vision, such as dashcam footage from city buses, to identify transport objects. The data will then be plotted on a map to see what transport is like in each neighbourhood, creating an evidence-based picture of the transport challenges of a city. The project will be piloted in Bo, Sierra Leone and will provide local government with information on vehicle and pedestrian traffic.
4) Safety and mobility challenges of persons with disability in Mekelle City: towards inclusive urban transport
People with disabilities have the right to inclusive, integrated and accessible infrastructure and services, yet in cities of most developing countries their needs are not being met. This research explores transport infrastructure and services in Mekelle City and how people with disabilities are served by them, developing inclusive transport policies to improve the availability of transport that is safe and easy to use by everybody.
5) Safe and secure public transport
Sonal Shah, The Urban Catalysts
The absence of regular and consistent gender-disaggregated data hinders the mainstreaming of the needs of women and other genders in public transport planning, operations and decision-making, thereby impeding efforts to provide a safe and secure commute. This project aims to close the gender gap in mobility data by supporting Delhi, the capital of India, in generating gender-sensitive transport data and ultimately to improve the safety of women on public transport. This will be achieved through the implementation of gender-tagging in the electronic ticketing system on Delhi’s buses.
6) Gendered approach of addressing adaptation capacity to hot weather conditions
Transportation Research and Injury Prevention Centre, Indian Institute of Technology, Delhi
Extreme weather events cause 6.62 deaths per million population annually in India, of these, approximately 50% are due to heat waves. There is limited data available about the adaptation and risks of travel, especially that of women, during heatwaves and heat action plans are often oversimplified and not tailored to the needs of vulnerable groups. This project takes a multidisciplinary approach to developing a framework to reduce the vulnerability of women commuters to hot weather conditions.
7) Freight emission index for heritage city of Ahmedabad
The Urban Lab Foundation
By 2050, road freight demand in India is expected to grow by five times, fuelling the nation’s emissions and putting pressure on the challenge to decarbonise transport. This project specifically explores air pollution as a key factor in the degradation of historical buildings and monuments, with a focus on the walled city of Ahmedabad. The research will devise a freight emissions index for heritage cities, designed to measure emissions, provide a set of key indicators for decision-makers and develop a mitigation plan for reducing freight emissions in these areas.
8) Road design guideline considering three-wheeler slow-moving vehicles (Tri-SMV) for urban and rural roads of Bangladesh
Islamic University of Technology (IUT)
Tri-SMVs makes up as much as 80% of the traffic in Bangladesh. However, roads are designed for motorised vehicles with four or more wheels only. This creates safety and comfort issues for Tri-SMVs’ drivers and passengers – significantly affecting the mobility of vulnerable groups. This project will develop road design guidelines to accommodate three-wheeled vehicles, enabling users to travel more safely without risk of accident or injury.
9) Policy and regulation development for motorcycle taxi safety in Nepal
University of the West of England, Bristol
43% of road traffic deaths in South-East Asia involve motorcycles, which are often used as taxis. Policy makers are reluctant to formalise these forms of public transport and, despite their popularity, users rate them poorly compared with other transport options, particularly due to the perceived safety risks. This research will gather data on motorcycle taxi related deaths and injuries in Nepal, and develop options for change including the allocation of road space, passenger safety and using cleaner vehicles.