Bicycling Research Symposium
Bringing together bicycling’s top academic professionals, Bikes Belong held an unprecedented Bicycling Research Symposium in Boulder, CO., on May 1, 2009. With 11 researchers in attendance from such diverse fields as urban planning, architecture, public health, civil engineering, environmental science, and public policy, the symposium provided a rare meeting of the minds to share ideas about the relationship between bike advocacy and research.
|University-based researchers in attendance|
|Chandra Bhat||Civil, Architectural & Envir. Engineering||University of Texas at Austin
||Urban Affairs & Planning
||Urban Studies & Planning
||University of Maryland
||Urban Studies & Planning
||Portland State University
|Peter Furth||Civil & Environmental Engineering
||Environmental Science & Policy
||Univeristy of California at Davis
||Planning & Design
||University of Colorado
||University of Oregon
||Harvard School of Public Health
||City & Regional Planning
||University of Northern California
||Planning, Public Policy & Management
||University of Oregon|
Special guests also included Leslie Bohm, Catalyst Communications CEO and Bikes Belong board member; Thomas Gotschi, Rails-to-Trails Conservancy director of research; Joe Lindsey, journalist; Patrick Seidler, Wilderness Trail Bikes president and Bikes Belong board member; Hillie Talens, CROW (Netherlands) project manager; and Zach Vanderkooy, Harvard University Graduate School of Design.
The event helped improve communication among researchers who study bicycling, it pinpointed key topics that warrant additional research, and it generated a better sense of what bicycling advocates need to make the case for additional government funding. The group also took a bike tour of Boulder, led by the city's Martha Roskowski, to learn how it became a platinum-level Bicycle Friendly Community. The full agenda is linked at the bottom of this page.
The symposium attendees rated the current state of bicycling research in a number of areas including economic impacts, health benefits, safety, influences on road congestion and more. The average ranking for these areas of research was a D . Demographics research received the highest score; bicycling's influence on road congestion received the lowest mark.The full State of the Research document is linked at the bottom of this page.
The quality and quantity of bicycling research
will continue to be a key factor in convincing Congress and other key
politicians and community leaders about the benefits of bicycling.
These performance-based facts and outcomes will be especially important
in determining bike program funding in the impending renewal of the
federal transportation bill.
Bikes Belong hopes to reconvene the group annually to foster a steady dialogue between the research and advocacy sides of bicycling.