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Private E-Cargo Bikes & Everyday Mobility in Ireland

eCargo bikes

    Private E-Cargo Bikes & Everyday Mobility in Ireland: We are seeking Interview Participants for this Study

    Find out more here.

  • Project Team:
  • Location:
    • Dublin

  • Theme:
    • Active Travel, Electric Mobility

  • Description:
    • To meet international 2030 climate targets, Ireland needs to halve emissions within its transport sector. In pursuing this target, a major stated policy goal is to encourage and facilitate members of the population to use sustainable transport modes instead of the private car. In light of revised climate action policy targets to reduce car use and increase active travel, e-cargo bikes have been proposed as a potential alternative to the private car. This potential may be greatest in the cargo- and passenger-carrying potential e-cargo bikes may provide relative to standard e-bikes, while improving the capabilities of standard cargo bikes. To date, there has been considerable research investigating the factors influencing both the uptake and use of cargo bikes – including e-cargo bikes. However, the great majority of this work has focused on the use of such bikes in small- and large-scale logistics operations, and has primarily relied on quantitative methods.

      In light of the relative absence of research into the enablers and barriers to e-cargo bike adoption as a car substitute for private use, this study will explore what various combination of elements (i.e., materials, competences, and meanings) are needed to make e-cargo bikes possible and attractive as a car substitute for cargo/passenger journeys among private users This will be achieved through qualitative interviews and observations followed by survey research with private e-cargo bike users. The findings could potentially inform ambitious policies to mainstream e-cargo bikes as a socio-technical alternative to car use in particular contexts across Ireland.

  • Expected Project Benefits:
    • This mixed-methods e-cargo bike study could provide comprehensive insights into the intersectoral policies needed to expand the substitution of private car journeys – and potentially private car ownership – with e-cargo bikes. In particular, it will be well-positioned to inform:

      • grants and incentive policies for e-cargo bike purchase (and relatedly, grants/incentive schemes for electric car purchase – which could be seen in relation to e-cargo bikes);

      • training programmes for confident e-cargo bike use;

      • e-cargo bike-friendly mobility and parking infrastructure in public and private spaces;

      • social marketing for e-cargo bikes (with a contextual attention to social marketing for electric cars);

      • land-use planning of destinations that may involve the collection and carriage of cargo (e.g., food and hardware shops) from the perspective of e-cargo bike accessibility relative to the car – and, relatedly, the localisation of everyday mobility practices/destinations.

  • Funding:
    • This research has been funded by the Sustainable Energy Authority of Ireland under the SEAI Fellowship Pilot Programme 2022, Grant number 22/RDDF/756. For the duration of this Fellowship, the Principal Investigator will be based within the SEAI Behavioural Economics Unit (BEU), where they will carry out the research under the supervision of the BEU Programme Manager, Dr. Hannah Julienne.

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