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Investing in walking and cycling for a sustainable and healthy urban future

Hannah Ohlund



Thursday, June 30, 2022


Multifunction Hall: SDGs in Action area
World Resources Institute
United States of America
Greener Urban Futures
SDG 15


Compared to the alternatives, walking and cycling networks provide the lowest emissions and most affordable, cost-efficient accessible modes of transport. However, active mobility is often dismissed as a small player in discussions on climate change and equity. This panel discussion will highlight the importance of shifting towards active mobility for achieving transport decarbonization and more equitable mobility through a special focus on investing and financing active travel infrastructure.

Drawing from their diverse experiences and backgrounds, the panel will present an array of policy recommendations and strategies for investing in safe, active transport based on their professional experience. Panelists will also discuss the role of recentering the sustainable mobility discussion around active travel, aligning goals between road safety, climate change, and equity.

The discussion shall seek to deepen the understanding of urban sustainability, active transport, and safety as necessarily interlocked and in need of critical investment at all levels. The structure of the event will follow a Q&A panel format with ample time for engagement with the audience. The moderator will begin the discussion with an introduction of the panelists and a brief overview of the topic. The moderator will then invite each panelist to deliver a brief statement addressing the topic of the session followed by an interactive dialogue between the panelists, moderator, and audience.

The panelists will structure their statements around innovative investments and interventions that have proven successful in encouraging active transport at the national, regional, and local levels.

The interactive dialogue will address questions such as:

  1. what policies and investments are needed to achieve a meaningful modal shift to active transport?;
  2. how can we maximize active travel’s impact to achieve greener, safer, healthier cities?;
  3. how can governments and stakeholders make strategic investments to create more equitable and inclusive cities?


The key objectives of the panel are to:

  1. share knowledge and experience on how cities can reduce their carbon footprint and shift to clean transport by promoting active transport through investment and infrastructure interventions, and to
  2. discuss best practices and lessons learned for designing and implementing active travel financial mechanisms and interventions that are context appropriate.

The WUF audience is a key target audience for our research and initiatives, as participants will include urban experts, practitioners, and public sector officials. Feedback and ideas from attendees will help to inform future research. This event will also help identify areas for capacity-building to support greater investment in walking and cycling and to develop innovative financing mechanisms.

Session speakers

Rogier van den Berg
Acting Director, WRI Ross Center for Sustainable Cities
World Resources Institute
Holger Haubold
Director, Intellectual Property & Data Collection
European Cyclists' Federation
Mariana Alegre
Executive Director
Lima Cómo Vamos
Janene Tuniz
Associate Urban Mobility Officer