International Transport Forum Discussion Papers

ITF Discussion Papers make economic research, commissioned or carried out in-house at the International Transport Forum, available to researchers and practitioners. They describe preliminary results or research in progress by the author(s) and are published to stimulate discussion on a broad range of issues on which the ITF works.

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Report on Public Transport Provision in Rural and Depopulated Areas in the United Kingdom

In drawing lessons from experience in the United Kingdom, it is useful to firstly examine some of the overall differences between the UK and Finland, both in respect of aggregate statistics and structure of the public transport system. The following statistics indicate the main comparisons. In many respects the main indicators are very similar (GDP in PPP terms, overall modal split, car ownership levels), with the very striking difference in population density, that for Finland being less than one tenth of the UK figure. In these circumstances it is not surprising that car ownership per head is somewhat higher (by 18.2%), and likewise total distance travelled per person (by 17.6%). An implication of these contrasts is that even areas regarded as ‘low density’ within the UK might not be classified as ‘low density’ by Finnish standards, and this may affect transferability of results.


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