Skip to main content

Constructing Users for Public Transport: The Case of Transantiago


In the search of more sustainable forms of urban mobility the increase in the use of public transport has consistently appeared among the top priorities of current transport policies of world cities. One of the key factors for the success of these policies is their capacity to attract growing amounts of people to use public transport. But until now these actual/potential users of public transport has received little attention both in academic research and in the design of policies in the area. In this context this research looks for contribute to the development of a specific research agenda on the users of public transport. Using a multidisciplinary theoretical framework the aim is to study in a comparative way the design and development of the user of a new public transport plan started in the city of Santiago, Chile in February 2007, called Transantiago. This plan had the aim of improve the use and quality of public transport in the city, but the results were exactly the opposite. Not only did the journeys by public transport become longer and highly uncomfortable, but almost every aspect of the new plan seemed not to be working properly. In particular this research project will study the development of the concept of the “user of Transantiago” and its implication for the implementation, and subsequent crisis, of the plan. The research questions are threefold. Firstly, to describe and analyze the multiple ways in which an “ideal” user of Transantiago was constructed inside the organizations involved in the development of the plan. Secondly, to study how the population who started using Transantiago interacted with this “ideal” user. Thirdly, to compare the Transantiago with other transport policies developed in the EU in order to extract some general conclusions about the role of users in public transport development.

Call for proposal

See other projects for this call


Strasse Des 17 Juni 135
10623 Berlin
Activity type
Higher or Secondary Education Establishments
EU contribution
€ 136 421,27
Administrative Contact
Simone Ludwig (Ms.)