Bus transport in Greater Manchester

Bus transport in Greater Manchester

Henrik Gudmundsson

During the past 15 – 20 years large parts of the public sector in the OECD countries but also outside the OECD have experienced so-called New Public Management (NPM) reforms. Not least the transport sector, and in particular public transport have been objects of these reforms. Important elements have been: Division of previously horizontal integrated organisations, corporatisation, privatisation, public-private partnerships, tendering and management by goals and results. The main purpose of the NPM reforms has been to increase the efficiency, effectiveness and accountability of public management. But taking a broader view on public transport policy, these are not the only things that matter. In our present work we are looking into the consequences of the NPM reforms in public transport for the realisation of Sustainable Transport objectives.

Our basic assumption is that ‘organisation matters’ and that the reforms may have changed significantly the institutional conditions for the implementation of sustainable transport policies and easures. We have focused the research on public transport in larger cities and how their organisation has changed due to the reforms. We will address two different components of the NPM inspired transport reforms in the UK. The first component regards the organisation of public bus transport at the local level. This involves the deregulation and privatisation reforms introduced by the Conservative Government from 1986 onwards, as well as the ‘partnerships’ and other new instruments introduced by the Labour Government in the Transport Act 2000, with the aim to modify some extreme effects of the initial deregulations. The second component includes reforms of how central government governs transport performance at the local level more generally through systems of Management by Objectives, performance control and economic incentives. Key elements here are national policies such as the ’10 year Plan for Transport’ with associated targets, and the ‘Local Transport Plan’ regime with annual funding settlements, etc.

The objective of the work carried out is to analyse which conditions the reforms create for attracting travellers from cars and for greening the bus fleets and fuels. Methodology and work carried out The empirical material includes literature on the bus industry, NPM reforms, and governance structures at the local level in the United Kingdom, as well as policy documents and reports on these topics. Moreover, 13 qualitative research interviews have been carried out in autumn 2007. The interviews involved management and staff at the Greater Manchester Passenger Transport Executive, GMPTE (eight persons); Greater Manchester Passenger Transport Authority, GMPTA (one officer, one politician); as well as operators and an association of operators (three persons).

LATEST NEWS


2018-06-13

International Conference on Electric Road Systems starts today

Electric Road Systems (ERS) is a relatively new concept with many initiatives on the way. To learn from each other and stimulate new collaborations the Swedish Research and Innovation Platform for Electric Roads arranged the first international conference...


2018-05-18

Same survey of road users’ attitudes in 50 countries

At the Road Safety on Five Continents Conference, RS5C, one entire session presented a large survey of road users' attitudes in 38 countries. Results show large differences between countries in many areas, both regarding behavior and attitudes. A new survey...


2018-05-17

Good results with alcohol interlock program according to Swedish study

An alcohol interlock program makes it possible for drink driving offenders to continue their everyday lives. In a Swedish study most of the participants were satisfied with the program and experienced improved health. They also reported drinking alcohol more...


2018-05-16

Traffic safety in the spotlight

Today the Conference Road Safety on Five Continents (RS5C) opened in Jeju Island, South Korea. More than 220 participators have come from all over the world to present findings and learn about traffic safety. Dr. Young Tae Kim, Secretary-General of the...


2018-04-17

VTI will develop simulators for ambulance staff

VTI has initiated a pilot study for paramedics with the Centre for Teaching & Research in Disaster Medicine and Traumatology and Linköping University. The aim is to give ambulance staff the opportunity to practice critical medical tasks in a moving vehicle in...


2018-04-12

Unique electrified road opens in Sweden

The world’s first electrified road recharging the batteries of cars and trucks while driving opened in Sweden. The Swedish Minister for Infrastructure, Tomas Eneroth, was at the formal inauguration of the electrified road on April 11, 2018. VTI is one of 22...