School of Urban & Regional Planning

Florida Atlantic University


Dr. Eric Dumbaugh featured participant in International Workshop on Safety, Sustainability and the Future of Urban Transportation in Delhi, India

Dr. Dumbaugh (third row, first from the left) with the workshop's international delegation of experts.

Dr. Eric Dumbaugh, associate professor and graduate program coordinator at the School of Urban and Regional Planning at Florida Atlantic University, was an invited participant to the International Workshop on Safety, Sustainability and the Future of Urban Transportation, sponsored by Volvo and the Transport Research and Injury Prevention Program, a World Health Organization Collaborating Centre, at the Indian Institute of Technology. This four-day event, held in Delhi, India from March 9-12, 2012, brought together twenty of the world's leading experts on the issue of urban safety to examine the issue of sustainable mobility in the 21st century.

The guiding theme of the workshop was that concerns about traffic safety and crime are major barriers to the development of a sustainable transportation system. Efforts to encourage travel by sustainable modes cannot be accomplished unless people feel safe and chose to walk and cycle by choice, either as the primary means of accessing their destinations or as a means for accessing transit. As such, safety is a necessary though not sufficient condition to mitigate the effects of global climate change.

Dr. Dumbaugh's lecture, entitled "Positive Design," detailed how the traffic safety strategies adopted in the United States during the 20th century have actually undermined efforts to encourage sustainable travel, as well as how those currently being adopted to address motorization in the developing world mirror the worst mistakes made in the United States. Dr. Dumbaugh concluded his lecture by outlining a new theoretical model for traffic safety—termed "Positive Design"—that is better able to reduce traffic-related deaths and injuries and support sustainable travel.

The results and conclusions of the workshop are being developed into a textbook aimed at guiding professionals and decision makers towards the adoption of more safe and sustainable transportation solutions.