In a situation like this when we are presenting to our readers at the NDRC a set of concepts that are perhaps somewhat different from what they are accustomed to dealing with in their day to day work, the technique of presentation of our ideas will weigh heavily. What we put down in terms of words is of course critical, but the way in which we present them is every bit as important.
Let me point this up with a smiling example. Just below I have reproduced every word of the 2,285 that appear in the illustrated proposal I sent to you earlier today:, the proposal with the illustrations, carefully layout, etc. Now what is the difference between the two? Well, the one you see below has all of those good words in it, but who is going to read them? Never mind act on them in some way?
I have tried hard in the last submittal — # 7 as attached – to take those 2,285 carefully chosen words and lay them out in a way that they catch the eye and the imagination of our readers. The images that I have selected are also important. They supply mental metaphors and permit the reader to identify more closely with the abstract ideas that all those words deal with.
I share this with you in the hope that the Chinese presentation will do an even better job of balancing words with presentation and images. E want to get our message through, so we shall need to be as smart and hard working as we can.
Thanks so much for all your guidance and help
World Share/Transport Forum 2011: First Invitational World Summit in China Laying the Base an Action Agenda for Share/Transport in China and the World; Objective: Coming together to lay the base an action agenda for share/transport in China and the world Dates: April 28-29 2011 Sponsor: NDRC and ??? Host city: To be named Participants: Upon invitation. (No charge) The program statement and work program that follows is just a first draft for your inspection and consideration. It is going to take several days of creative interaction to come up with the full final work program for the 28/29 April event in Changzhi. But you will see that we have a strong start here, and now all it will take is brains and hard work to make it into a world level event. Summary and Objective: This two day strategic workshop will invite presentations, discussion and contributions from expert international participants, working in close cooperation with selected senior representatives from institutions and cities across China. Their goal will be to lay the base for a national Share/Transport Campaign to be launched in cooperation with United Nations World Environment Day and associated international events in the first week of June The goal of this first workshop is to join forces to provide practical knowledge of national and international good practice in the field of share/transport, and to inform and assist delegates in the eventual planning and implementation of share/transport projects and programs in their cities. The participants will work together to lay the base for development a project plan for a national campaign to promote Share/Transport, which will be rolled out in cities across China, and which will be China’s 2011 contribution to The World Environment Day. The event will include media and communications components to generate interest and excitement about the Share/Transport World Environment Day Campaign in China and abroad. Preface: Addressing the “Too Many Cars/ Too Little Mobility Problem” The objective of this two day strategic workshop in Changzhi in late April is very specific — and it is important that it be understood fully and properly from the beginning. It is not just one more expert workshop on sustainable transportation. The goal of the April collaborative event is to present, discuss and examine the first steps of a new policy path for dealing with the most pressing problems of transport in cites in all of China – all while noting that if Chinese cities can demonstrate how this new path works, it will be a contribution that will be valuable for cities around the world. The challenge is to find the solutions needed to deal with the present situation in which there are, to summarize, (a) too many cars in the cities, and (b) that as a result of car-crowding ever worse conditions for mobility, including even for those who can afford and drive their own cars. The answer is not to ban all cars, nor to force people either to stay at home of take public transport which may not offer the quality of service they expect and need. We are looking at a Third Way. The Third Way solution that we shall be examining in Changzhi involves the careful strategic application both what we call “carrots” and “sticks”. The sticks have to do with ways of limiting the space and conditions of access available to cars, both when moving and parked — while the carrots have to do with offering new and more efficient mobility solutions for people at all levels of income and in all cities, East and West. This challenge of the “too many cars/too little mobility” problem are already important enough in themselves if we think of them in terms of the ever greater amounts of time that Chinese citizens are losing when they are stuck in traffic, the high costs of car ownership and use which strain the budgets of many families that are buying them, and the losses in terms of air quality, accidents, public health, quality of life, and of course the huge impacts on the climate and climate modification. But in addition to this we now have to add a 2011 realty, which is that of the “New Mobility Spring”. Of which the most conspicuous elements are the continuing rises in the price of fossil fuels, which are only going to get worse. And the new and suddenly very pressing questions that are now going to be asked about and for sure modify the intended rapid expansion of nuclear energy as an option to goal and other fossils fuels. So we already need to start preparing our cities for this New Energy Spring, which in transport terms means that we have to have more efficient movement options, and that the present situation of unchecked growth of automobile traffic needs to be reversed. The 2011 Share/Transport program in China, of which this planning and introductory workshop is but a first step, will be dedicated to the search for practical, near term, affordable solutions to the too many cars/too little mobility puzzle that is facing policy makers and public authorities not only in China but in countries and cities around the world. What is Share Transport? Share/Transport is a proven integrated strategic approach to providing more and better mobility in our cities. It is not an option; it is indispensable for our cities. While not familiar to many people and cities, including many planners and policy makers, it is an indispensable 21st century toolset and strategy for our cities, in a world of seven billion people and in an era of exploding urbanization, increasing income levels and consumer expenditures, and a growing international appetite of people for cars The biggest single problem arising from this last is not that there is anything wrong with people having cars, per se, but it is where and how they use them. And in this respect the clearest contradiction and biggest policy challenge results from the public space conflicts that we are seeing in our cities. (We call this challenge of too many cars in too small a space, the “Elephant in the Bedroom” syndrome. Despite its playful name, it is a major challenge for policy makers worldwide). We have learned this over the past decade. After years of neglect, we now know that in the face of these crippling problems and trends we need to develop strategies whereby (a) people to have more and better mobility — but also (b) many fewer cars in our cities. And while this was already becoming clear in the last century, given the speed of developments in recent years it has become a major 21st century issue for public policy worldwide, China included. Share/Transport is one proven way to deal with this challenge of too many cars and too poor mobility; however despite its clear advantages and many successes, for various reasons until now it is not sufficiently well known or appreciated by transport planners and policy makers in all parts of the world. And remedying this is one of the main objectives of the April workshop. Share/Transport has three main working components, that have to do with transport modes, transport space, and transport information: Shared modes – Making transport more efficient. through taxi sharing, small bus sharing, bicycle sharing , car sharing, ride sharing, and new ways of sharing integrated into and increasing the flexibility and service levels of existing public transport systems. Shared space – Better sharing and use of the scarce public space in a city . Encompassing: land-use policy, access control and restraints, modal segregation (BRT, cycle lanes), parking, time zoning of activities, shared surfaces and limiting traffic speeds in specific areas. . Shared information – ITS, maps, schedules, interactive media, behaviour change. One of the essential components and criteria for success of share/transport projects keys on better information and communications technologies (ICT). This technology component can not only be integrated to offer far higher levels of service and to more people than at any time in the past, but it also opens up significant opportunities for industry and new product development. A good part of the future of share/transport will be as a result of the roles played by that mobile telephone in your pocket. It is going to emerge as people’s key to the public transportation of the new future. The conference will look into trends and accomplishments of specific shared transport modes and their potential for application in Chinese city context; but it will not stop there We will also be taking a hard look at their short-comings and making recommendations as to how they can be mitigated. The China 2011 Share/Transport project will constitute a major gift of China to the world at a time when practical, affordable and equally fast policy responses have never been more needed. Event Format: A small team of carefully selected recognized international experts in Share/Transport will work together with ten to fifteen of their outstanding Chinese colleagues, to share their knowledge and expertise with around fifty senior representatives from Chinese Cities. The event will be held in a host city in China (to be decided) over a two day period from 28/29 April, and will comprise of presentations, discussions, and preparations for the contrition to the 2011 World Environment Day celebration of 5 June 2011.. The program will be delivered in Chinese and English, with translation services to be provided by the hosts. It will be organized, recorded and broadcast over the internet in an interactive format to allow participation by those unable to be present, in cities across China and abroad.. Draft Program (Please. This program is incomplete and still under construction. For it to be first class we need to have discussion and feedback and then work this additional information into an improved final version. This can be done within the week if it has 100% of our attention and priority.) Wednesday, 27th April – Sharing Transport Afternoon: Conference registration open 18:00. Short films by way of background and introduction 18:30. Welcoming cocktail Thursday, 28th April – Setting the stage 08:00. Registrations and conference materials 09:00 Opening session I: Keynote addresses (15 minutes each): • Climate Change impacts of transport – Leading Climate Change Scientist • World Bank perspective on transport climate mitigation projects – GEF National Policy approach – NDRC viewpoint • Plans for host city – Mayor 10:00~11:30. Introduction to Share/Transport Worldwide:(Topics to be presented/Speakers to follow) The target: Fewer cars and better mobility in cities What is Share/Transport and where is it going. Is S/T second class mobility? A step backward? The New Energy Spring and what it means for our cities Importance of the good (short) trip Why people share (and why they don’t) 11:30~12:00 Sustainable Transport in Asia – successes and failures (3 or 4 presentations) Session leaders: Jason Chang (Taiwan) City Representative (PRC) 12:00~12:30 Beyond the modes (to be detailed) 14:00~17:30 Session III: What is Share/Transport? Expert presentations Bicycle sharing Taxi and small bus sharing Ride-sharing and car-sharing . Public Transport – priority and promotion. Space-sharing – shared surfaces ICT applications for sharing transportation Sharing Information – social marketing, spider mapping, way-finding Evening event: ?? Celebratory dinner Friday, 29th April – Preparing for Next Steps and UN World Environment Day 09:00~10:30 Workshop 1 – Parallel Sessions: Parallel breakout sessions with audience participation and discussion (There will be time to attend two 40 minute sessions of your choice). Bicycle sharing Taxi and small bus sharing Ride-sharing and car-sharing Public Transport – priority and promotion Space-sharing – shared surfaces. ICT applications for sharing transportation Sharing Information – social marketing, spider mapping, way-finding The social-psychology of sharing 10:30 . Coffee break 1100 – 1230 Parallel session 2 (As above) Afternoon: Plenary (Details to follow) 1400 – 1530 Selling the vision – A communications strategy for sustainable transport in China 1600 – 1800 Closing Session: Conclusions, Recommendations, Strategy, Next Steps National Share Transport Campaign – World Environment Day June 5th 2011. April, 30th April – Open sessions Program of these open sessions to follow- This is very important China’s contribution to United Nationals World Environment Day 2011 World Environment Day (WED) is an annual event that is aimed at being the biggest and most widely celebrated global day for positive environmental action. WED activities take place all year round but climax on 5 June every year, involving everyone from everywhere. WED celebration began in 1972 and has grown to become the one of the main vehicles through which the UN stimulates worldwide awareness of the environment and encourages political attention and action. Through WED, the UN Environment Programme is able to personalize environmental issues and enable everyone to realize not only their responsibility, but also their power to become agents for change in support of sustainable and equitable development. WED is also a day for people from all walks of life to come together to ensure a cleaner, greener and brighter outlook for themselves and future generations. Everyone counts in this initiative and WED relies on you to make this happen! We call for action – organize a neighborhood clean-up, stop using plastic bags and get your community to do the same, plant a tree or better yet organize a collective tree planting effort, walk to work, start a recycling drive . . . the possibilities are endless. China’s Contribution In parallel with the other 2011 United Nations WED events taking place , China will hold an open virtual conference and associate events to introduce to world city’s China’s innovative approach to “share transport in cities”. [Statement and program to be developed subsequent to the 28/29 April workshop and conference in Changzhi. Our first step will be to register the program at http://www.unep.org/wed/aroundtheworld/).]
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Abut the editor: