Abstracts for: Long-distance travel, social change and climate change: troubles ahead?

We’d like to invite abstracts for our proposed session for RGS-IBG Annual Conference 2019 on the topic of “Long-distance travel, social change and climate change: troubles ahead?”.The session is sponsored by the Transport Geography Research Group.

 Long-distance travel, social change and climate change: troubles ahead?


Call for paper abstracts for a proposed session at the Royal Geographical Society Annual Conference 2019. The conference will take place at the Society in London and at Imperial College London from Tuesday 27 to Friday 30 August 2019.


Convenors: Dr Giulio Mattioli, (Department of Transport Planning, TU Dortmund University), Prof. Joachim Scheiner (Department of Transport Planning, TU Dortmund University) Dr Zia Wadud (Institute for Transport Studies and Centre for Integrated Energy Research, University of Leeds)


Long distance passenger travel – whether domestic or international – accounts for a small share of trips, but a large share of travel distances, energy use, and carbon emissions. Despite the recent excitement about ‘peak car’, traffic volumes are growing on motorways, trunk roads and railways in the UK, and CO2 emissions from international aviation in the EU have more than doubled since 1990. Non-work and leisure activities play a big role here, and a number of broad social trends (e.g. transnationalism, migration, ICT, changing nature of work, individualisation, ageing) have a clear bearing on these developments. Yet our understanding of the social, economic and lifestyle drivers of long-distance travel demand is still limited.

This session welcomes both theoretical and empirical contributions to help advance our understanding of the link between social change and growing travel demand in the long-distance sector and their potential implications in terms of energy and carbon emissions. All topics under this general theme are welcome, some suggestions are: 

•          long-distance travel and urban form / built environment (including residential self-selection effects)

•          intensive long-distance travel among sectors of population commonly perceived as environmentally minded (e.g. urbanites, young adults, academics), and strategies to cope with the resulting ‘attitude-behaviour’ gap

•          comparative assessments of trends in everyday and long-distance travel

•          linkages between different types of ‘mobilities’ (e.g. migration, residential relocation, multilocality) and long-distance travel

•          biographical and life-course perspectives on long-distance travel

•          travel-intensive leisure practices

•          impact of long-distance travel on environmental outcome

•          policy, stakeholders’ and activist perspectives on long-distance travel

•          policies to curb long-distance travel demand and related acceptability challenges

•          the impact of emerging transport technologies and services on long-distance travel

•          spatial dispersion of social networks and long-distance travel in an ICT-intensive society

You are invited to submit abstracts of between 200-300 words by email to giulio.mattioli@tu-dortmund.de by 3rd February 2019. We will then select the best submissions for our full session proposal which will be submitted to RGS in mid-February. We expect to have final confirmation of acceptance by end March 2019.

Further information about the conference can be found here: https://www.rgs.org/research/annual-international-conference/programme-(1)/