University of Twente Student Theses


Assessment of Transport-Related Social Exclusion Among the Dutch Elderly: A Comparative Mixed Method Approach

Durmus, Ikra (2022) Assessment of Transport-Related Social Exclusion Among the Dutch Elderly: A Comparative Mixed Method Approach.

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Abstract:Around the world, social exclusion is considered an important problem that has been further exacerbated by the effects of the recent COVID-19 Pandemic. Because the core value of social exclusion is “the inability to fully participate in social life”, accessibility, thus, transportation is a significant determinant of social exclusion. There is a growing literature that investigates transport-related social exclusion (TRSE) in various country contexts aimed at different disadvantageous target groups. Yet, only a few of the studies focus on the elderly despite their decreasing capabilities and increasing dependency on others making this group vulnerable to TRSE. Considering the ageing population and large share of the elderly population, the Netherlands is one of the countries at risk of experiencing TRSE in the elderly. Therefore, this study analyzes TRSE among the Dutch elderly. For this purpose, the methodology includes both quantitative and qualitative approaches. The quantitative approach brings an understanding of TRSE using the 2019 Dutch National Travel Survey. As a first step, this approach assesses TRSE based on the travel behaviours of the elderly and the other disadvantaged groups under the elderly in urban and rural areas. As part of the second step, a transport disadvantage index is developed based on the results of disadvantageous travel behaviour characteristics. This index is later on used to see the spatial distribution of transport disadvantage as an approximation of TRSE problem areas. As a result of these two steps of the quantitative approach, gender, car-ownership status, and migration status are defined as disadvantaged groups while Haaksbergen and Rotterdam are defined as rural and urban problem areas respectively. Next, a qualitative approach is conducted in these problem areas by using semi-structured interviews. Theory-driven thematic analysis is used to analyse these interviews. This analysis helped to have a detailed understanding of the relational and multi-dimensional structure of the TRSE together with the quantitative analysis. Both studies have pointed out the dependency on car use as well as dependency on others in the travels of the elderly. However, contrary to quantitative analysis, qualitative analysis illustrated that both urban and rural areas carry disadvantages leading to TRSE. Moreover, whereas the quantitative analysis concluded that there is a strong relationship between age and transport-related social exclusion, the qualitative analysis refuted this relationship by explaining this relationship with abilities rather than the age of an individual.
Item Type:Essay (Master)
Faculty:ITC: Faculty of Geo-information Science and Earth Observation
Subject:74 (human) geography, cartography, town and country planning, demography
Programme:Geoinformation Science and Earth Observation MSc (75014)
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