28 Jun 2023

Prof. Simon Kingham from the University of Canterbury explores what’s going on with transport in Aotearoa/NZ

From the collecton Raising the Bar
Cars stuck in gridlock traffic during heavy rain in Auckland on 9 May, 2023.

Photo: RNZ / Lucy Xia

There are as many questions about transport as there are questioners, and what they ask about can reveal a lot about what is though of as a priority in this essential sector of the economy, affecting how we all lead our lives.

Questions such as:

“What is going on with transport?.. The government is trying to make speed limits so slow it will take ages to get anywhere and cripple the economy… They are spending millions of dollars building cycleways that no one uses… And they keep telling us that cars are to blame for global warming when everyone knows it is dairy cows that are the problem… And anyway, we‘re a tiny country so we can’t make a difference… As for the potholes, why don’t they just fix them and leave us to get on with our lives.”

So what is happening? Why is the government pursuing these policies? And what does the evidence tell us about our transport and what might happen in the future.

A leading expert in the field, Prof. Simon Kingham, lays out the issues of significance for all of us, from cycleways, to speed restrictions, public transport and decarbonisation.  

About the speaker

Professor Simon Kingham

Photo: University of Canterbury

Simon Kingham

Simon Kingham is Ahorangi o te Matawhenua/Professor of Geography at the University of Canterbury. In this role he teaches and undertakes research on a range of issues related to the impact of the urban environment on wellbeing, with a specific focus on transport. He is also seconded to Te Manatū Waka/the Ministry of Transport as their Chief Science Advisor. His role there is to ensure that policy is evidence-based.

This session is broadcast in association with the University of Canterbury’s Raising the Bar Christchurch night, held in May 2023

Logo for Raising the Bar Christchurch

Photo: University of Canterbury