Ideas and Impact
The School
Oxford Leadership Programme: Global Challenges in Transport

Oxford Leadership Programme: Global Challenges in Transport

New technologies and changing behaviours

The ‘New Technologies and Changing Behaviours’ course begins with TSU’s director, Professor David Banister’s session entitled; ‘Planetary Boundaries and Low-Carbon Urban Mobility’. This preliminary session examines the interfaces between environmental, social and economic boundaries, and stimulates our discussions and debates around urban mobility and the sustainable mobility paradigm. It provides an essential introduction to the broader perspectives covered in later sessions throughout the week.

This is followed by a conversation about wider energy use with OPower. Considered the ‘middleman between utility companies and their consumers’, Opower is a customer engagement platform which aims to save both utilities and their consumers, money and energy through the use of data analytics and behavioural science software. OPower is welcomed back to Oxford as they are considered a powerful exemplar as to how we as industry leaders can strategically change and adapt our (energy) behaviours through science and innovation in an attempt to improve our professional relationships and energy efficiency goals at scale.

Following this, Lancaster University’s Dr. David Tyfield discusses his cutting-edge research and evidence in his popular ‘Greening China’s “cars”’ session. This session provides a socio-technical systems perspective on the sustainable future of urban mobility in China. Dr. Tyfield aims to establish and proffer debate on new perspectives by reconceptualising the low-carbon shift through advancing innovations within the Electric Vehicle (EV) market. Participants will take from this a greater understanding of the future role and implementation of EVs with particular emphasis on the context of a major market leader; China.

Dr. Justin Bishop from the University of Cambridge discusses carbon and energy reduction in transport investigating the technological and non-technological options available, both to achieve the C02 target and reduce the wider impacts associated with passenger cars in the UK.

The final session steers participants back to the private sector’s role; with TSU warmly receiving Graham Biggs from BMW talking about the incredible innovations and technologies in place to make the BMWi a world leader in the Electric Vehicle market. This session provides the forefront of industry-in-practice allowing participants to debate and question the role of these new technologies in our market economy.

In the morning of the third day of the course, participants are taken to the Oxford BMW MINI Plant for an exclusive guided tour. Participants will see first hand how body shell production, paint and final assembly of MINIs is undertaken, plus an exclusive tour around their exhibition hall with the opportunity to engage with the BMW team and ask questions about the entire process. The 2.5 hour tour also includes learning about the history of car manufacturing in Oxford as well as the current products under production. 

Following the tour of the Oxford MINI plant speakers from the International Energy Agency and Transport for London provide participants with an overview on the role of governance and policy-focused perspectives much needed to establish a rounded perspective on the transport challenges we face over the next decades. These sessions allow participants access to a deeper insight into the decisions and actions taken at a higher, international and policy-relevant level.

Tali Trigg from the IEA will discuss the agency's work in transportation, tackling energy and mobility issues from car sharing to pus rapid transport, with a focus on findings from IEA's report Global EV Outlook to answer questions; what is the state of progress for vehicle electrification today, what should it be, and how does this impact overall decarbonisation efforts?

Transport for London's Ben Plowden's session will propose and ask vital questions about the successes and challenges London and it's transport faced with the design, implmentation and delivery of the London 2012 Olympics. Mr Plowden focuses on the behavioural change interventions put in place and the lasting legacy such 'nudges' have left across the city and within different London Boroughs and their businesses.         

The final session of the week is by Dr Robin Hickman from University College London who's 'Transport Futures in London' session will allow participants to actively partake in a simulation session 'scenario planning' for the future of tranport in London; essential for policymakers and planners. 

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Key information

Course length

Four days
Tuesday - Friday


25-28 March 2015


(accommodation included)

Download the brochure

Download the timetable