In the metropolitan mobility system, transport and land use developments and policies, and mobility and location behaviours, continuously interact with each other and with the broader societal context in complex ways (see, in particular, Chapter 2, and therein Figure 2.3). At the same time transformative change of the metropolitan mobility system is needed, because its present configuration is deeply problematic: it makes urban households and firms dependent on mobility, but their mobility practices are not sustainable. Achieving transformative change in the face of complexity is a difficult and seemingly paradoxical task. Developments in each component of the system both enable and constrain developments in other components. Changing a single component (e.g. a transport facility, or a land use pattern) might not suffice, and will most likely result in no or marginal change, or even in unintended consequences with possibly perverse effects (i.e. effects contrary to the original intention). It may result in no or marginal change because the lack of change in other components will keep the system on its present course. Think about the development of railway infrastructure in a context where destinations are spatially dispersed and car use is unconstrained – in such a context, not many people will shift from using the car to using the train. Changing a single component may also result in unintended consequences because of repercussions on components other than those targeted. The effects can even be perverse.
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