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Active sustainable travel

Completed Project

Calendar icon Active Travel and transport

Folder icon Apr 2007 - Sep 2023

Please note this page includes all our historic outputs on active sustainable travel from 2007 up to 2023. You can find our most recent research on active sustainable travel in our current projects section or the specific research project pages.

Active forms of travel, including walking, cycling and wheeling, are not only important to health for their contribution to increasing physical activity, but also to help address obesity, improve mental health, tackle climate change, reduce air pollution, and can help build more connected communities. Active travel is an intrinsic part of a sustainable transport system, one that prioritises low carbon transport choices and comprises multiple modes, including walking, cycling, wheeling, public transport, and car sharing.

We have a long-established programme of research on active and sustainable travel. This has involved:

  • Collating and analysing national survey and routine data to understand trends on modes of travel and casualties for different population groups.
  • Conducting research to explore travel patterns and influences on travel choices.
  • Evaluating the impact of transport policies, new infrastructure and active travel investments on health and inequalities.
  • Convening seminars and workshops to discuss emerging issues and possible ways forward.

Older couple cycling on a path in the woods, with purple flowers lining the path.

From this evidence we have demonstrated the strong health, social inclusion, and environmental benefits for reducing car use and increasing sustainable travel. We have made recommendations of ways to do this, and have informed transport and health-related policy and practice in Glasgow and beyond.

Output icon Project outputs

Publications & Documents


resources icon Further resources & reading

Road space reallocation in Scotland: A health impact assessment. 
Douglas M.J, Teuton J, Macdonald A, et al. Journal of Transport & Health, Volume 30, 2023.

Cycling Trends in Scotland during the Early Phase of the COVID Pandemic
Whyte B, McArthur D, Garnham L et al. Active Travel Studies, 2022.

Quantifying the health and economic benefits of active commuting in Scotland
Baker G, Pillinger R, Kelly P, et al. Journal of Transport and Health, 2021.

Making the shift to sustainable transport in Scotland
Davis A and Whyte B. Cities & Health, 2020.

Building a bridge, transport infrastructure and population characteristics: explaining active travel into Glasgow 
McCartney G, Whyte B, Livingston M et al. Transport Policy, 2012.

Editorial – Promotion of cycling and health 
Mutrie N and Crawford F. British Medical Journal, 2010.

Promoting walking to school: Results of a quasi-experimental trial
McKee R, Mutrie N, Crawford F et al. Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health, 2007.

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