Connecting New Concepts to Advance Pedestrian Safety


PBIC is observing Pedestrian Safety Month by sharing resources, webinars, and other tools to help advance safety for people who walk, bike, and use other nonmotorized modes. Each week is dedicated to an emerging concept within transportation-related topics that is motivating the field to consider values and processes within traditional transportation approaches. Many of the resources originate from other disciplines that intersect with transportation, such as public health or social justice, that show how these concepts can be applied in a specific context. These resources can help inspire the critical work needed in pedestrian safety to make an impact and reverse the increasing trend of pedestrian deaths and injuries.

The list of recommended resources is by no means exhaustive, and PBIC welcomes suggestions for other resources to include in the Pedestrian Safety Month calendar or within other Center outlets. See below for a list of contributors who offered ideas for concepts and resources.

Week 1: October 4 - 8, 2021

People-Centered Values and a Culture of Safety

Shifting to a people-centered transportation system that prioritizes the right for all to use the road by walking, biking, or other nonmotorized modes and reach their destination unharmed requires an emphasis on shared values on the importance of life, including care and compassion. Understanding safety within this context, as well as shaping public norms, can help move towards a culture of safety. Learn more about language and messaging to build a foundation for shared values:

  • Redefining Safety Webinar (Collaborative Sciences Center for Road Safety (CSCRS)) explores our past and current definitions of "safety" in transportation and how we can expand and redefine that definition under a Safe Systems approach to better advance transportation access and mobility justice. With presenters: Charles T. Brown, Equitable Cities; Jamila Porter, De Beaumont Foundation; and Megan Wier, City of Oakland.
  • Health Equity Guiding Principles for Inclusive Communication (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)) serves as a living document to provide principles, resources, and specific suggestions on a variety of topics to help inform an inclusive approach to public health communications.
  • Walk to School Day 2021 on October 6 builds support for safe places to walk and bike to school. The annual event provides an opportunity for communities to focus on improving road safety where children and youth walk and bike and can be the catalyst for safety improvements that benefit all. See also Vision Zero for Youth for more resources and ideas for building community support.
  • Blame the Victim Policy Narratives and State-Level Transportation Policy Decisions: Final Report (Transportation Research Center for Livable Communities) discusses the intersection of media, public opinion, and politics, and their impact on public policy. Investigates the relationship between policy narratives that cast people who walk and bike as "guilty" rather than "victims" and policy tools used to improve safety in local communities.
  • Shaping the narrative around traffic injury (CSCRS) offers ideas to re-frame conversations about traffic injury and themes and thought prompts for shaping narratives. The Traffic Crashes As Seen On TV: An Opportunity to Reshape the Dialogue Around Road User Injury webinar explores further. With presenters: Seth LaJeunesse, UNC Highway Safety Research Center and Sydney Nicolla, UNC Hussman School of Journalism and Media.

Week 2: October 11 - 15, 2021

Equity and Accessibility Informed Through Inclusive Engagement

Black, Indigenous, and People of Color are overrepresented in pedestrian fatalities and injuries and harmful policies in transportation have led to deep inequities. Transportation decision making should be shifted to communities and community members through inclusive engagement processes so that they can inform what safety, equity, and accessibility means and looks like locally. Learn more about prioritizing equitable approaches and expanded engagement processes to include justice and health perspectives to transportation practices:

  • Design Justice Network provides a set of principles that help rethink design processes so that they center on people who are too often marginalized by design.
  • America Walks Mobility Justice page offers resources, webinars, and more on mobility justice, racial equity, and more. Also don’t miss their upcoming webinar on Oct. 15 "How to Take on Harmful Jaywalking Laws," with presenters: Charles T. Brown, Equitable Cities; Caro Jauregui, California Walks; Michael Kelley, BikeWalkKC; and Councilmember Isaiah Thomas, Philadelphia City Council.
  • Transportation, Race and Equity: A Syllabi Resource List for Faculty (Jennifer Dill, TREC at Portland State University; Kendra Levine, UC Berkeley ITS Library; Jesus Barajas, UC Davis) collects readings and other resources on issues of race, racism, equity, and justice in the transportation field.
  • Confronting Power and Privilege in Transportation Planning for Health and Equitable Communities (PBIC) calls for shifting the way we plan, build, program, advocate, and legislate for transportation in our communities to prioritize health and quality of life for everyone. With presenters: Odetta MacLeish-White, TransFormation Alliance; Tamika Butler, Esq., Tamika L. Butler Consulting; Vedette R. Gavin, Conservation Law Foundation; and Veronica O. Davis, City of Houston.
  • Making Equity Real in Mobility Pilots Resource and Toolkit (Greenlining) compiles a set of resources and tools intended to guide government agencies, companies, and other entities in the planning, development, implementation, and evaluation of equitable mobility projects.

Week 3: October 18 - 22, 2021

Measuring Performance and Processes Through Meaningful Data

While the numbers, observations, and other information collected as data may be "objective," the ways in which these data are collected, analyzed, and interpreted are not. However, despite these limitations, data help us make sense of the world and these data play an important role in understanding emerging issues related to pedestrian safety. Therefore, to address pedestrian safety in a timely, comprehensive, and equitable manner, it is key to engage experts from an array of disciplines, including community members, and to collect data from a variety of sources, both qualitative and quantitative, to inform the development of meaningful data metrics. Learn more about new and collaborative approaches to gathering, analyzing, interpreting, and communicating data:

Week 4: October 25 - 29, 2021

Collaboration and Change Processes

Pedestrian safety calls for coordination within the transportation sector and also with other diverse, related areas. Collaboration between agencies and stakeholders can help identify issues within a complex system and move towards solutions together. Learn more about working with partners and change processes to apply to pedestrian safety topics:

  • Redesigning the System to Support Safety webinar (CSCRS) offers essential processes for implementing Safe Systems approaches by desiloing funding, redistributing power, supporting authentic public engagement and community planning. With presenters: Katherine Chen, Safe Transportation Research and Education Center (SafeTREC), University of California, Berkeley; Steve Hoyt-McBeth, Portland Bureau of Transportation; Aidil Ortiz, Aidilisms LLC; and Destiny Thomas, Thrivance Group.
  • Asking Different Questions Research Training Playlist (UC Davis Feminist Research Institute) offers a series training videos to help support researchers interested in better integrating social justice into their scholarship. Includes Moving from Asking Different Questions to Action-Oriented Change episode that discusses enacting action-oriented change by walking through a practical, step-by-step, iterative process for envisioning, planning, and implementing tangible change.
  • Connecting Transportation and Health: A Guide to Communication and Collaboration (AASHTO Committee on Environment and Sustainability) provides an accessible, practitioner-ready communications guidebook and set of tools and resources that help USDOT, state DOTs, metropolitan planning organizations (MPOs), and local transportation professionals achieve successful policy, planning, and project outcomes through effective collaboration with health stakeholders.
  • What is Multisolving? (Climate Interactive) shares information, resources, tools, and more on multisolving, which is implementing a solution to solve many issues, often through collaborative approaches.
  • Change Management Tools for Safe System Implementation webinar (CSCRS) explores how communities can equip themselves with more integrated data, adaptive leadership methods, and systems-oriented tools to help them evaluate and better manage the change process. With presenters: Becky Naumann, Injury Prevention Research Center, UNC Chapel Hill; Steve Orton, North Carolina Institute for Public Health, UNC Chapel Hill; and Keshia Pollack Porter, Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health.

You can also use the calendar view as a tracking tool for the resources listed above.


PBIC acknowledges these contributors who suggested ideas for emerging concepts and related resources (listed in alphabetical order, by organization): AARP, Jana Lynott; America Walks, Mike McGinn; Association of Pedestrian and Bicycle Professionals, Amanda Leahy and Jeremy Chrzan; Big Cities Health Coalition, Jamila Porter; Center for Health and Safety Culture, Matthew Madsen and Rebecca Gleason; Colville Tribal Public Safety, Kwis Logan and Nicole Ahlem; Families for Safe Streets, Debbie Khan; Governors Highway Safety Association, Pam Fischer; Institute of Transportation Engineers, Sarah Abel; It Could Be Me, Triny Willerton; League of American Bicyclists, Caron Whitaker and Ken McLeod; NACTO, Jenny O'Connell; National Association of State Directors of Pupil Transportation Services, Ronna Webber; National Association of State Emergency Medical Services Officials, Dia Gainor National Disability Rights Network, Dara Baldwin; National Safe Routes to School, Nancy Pullen-Seufert; National Safety Council. Jane Terry and Tara Leystra; National Tribal Injury Prevention Resource Center, Tabatha Harris; Road to Zero Council, Heidi Simon; Safe States Alliance, Shelli Stephens-Stidham; TRB Pedestrian Committee / Research and Practice Community, Charles T. Brown, L. Veronica Davis, and Lauren Grove; and Vision Zero Network, Leah Shahum.

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