Mobility Justice in Rural Areas: the Impact of Railway Provision on Territorial Cohesion

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This research seeks to understand the relationship between territorial cohesion and mobility provision. In fact, territorial cohesion as an academic concept remains rather vague, and planners lack tools to effectively understand spatial inequalities. Specifically, it looks at a case of railway closure in rural France and how this closure affected geographical skewness. The research (i) explains that territorial cohesion is intrinsically dynamic since spatial inequalities reproduce, (ii) understands that a lack of mobility alternatives at the individual level affects the commune, (iii) acknowledges that the long-term effects and potentials change over different geographical proximities to the metropolis, (iv) assesses how the lack of mobility affects the various dimensions of territorial cohesion, (v) stresses the interrelations between all these dimensions, (vi) depicts the special role played by governance systems in attaining territorial cohesion, and (vii) argues why an experience-based approach to territorial cohesion yields better insights about spatial inequalities and more efficient ways to level interterritorial disparities. It concludes that mobility provision is an important factor for territorial cohesion – though not the only factor – and acknowledges that mobility provision needs to be adapted to communities and current challenges to be satisfactory for the region.
Faculteit der Managementwetenschappen