Author Archives: Fleximobility_admin

Report on Council Office Reorganisation

This short report aims to highlight the most important findings to emerge from a survey conducted by the Disruption project into the impacts of the recent workplace reorganisation implemented by the City of York Council (CYC). As part of the reorganisation CYC consolidated its offices and workforce in 2013 from 17 sites to just 2 sites, West Offices and Hazel Court. In addition CYC also introduced new working practices that encouraged flexible working hours, ‘hot-desking’ and working from home. This was necessitated by a deliberate decision to reduce the desk space available at the two new sites compared to the previous 17 sites.

The two new initiatives had the potential to cause disruption, both positive and negative, to CYC employees in a number of ways. The consolidation of office space might lead to longer or shorter commuting journeys for employees, a potential change in routes, a potential change in modes and more/less complex trip chaining, (e.g. dropping children at school on the way to work). New working practices might be welcomed by some employees who enjoy the flexibility they can bring and less welcomed by others who prefer more structure and an office environment. They might lead to productivity gains at the individual and organisational level, or losses if employees are not able to connect and engage with colleagues at appropriate times.

WP3 CYC_Reorganisation_Final Report June 2015

Report on Ethnographies of Mobilities and Disruption

Between Spring 2012 and Summer 2014, 23 families and 36 individuals in Brighton, and 16 families and 25 individuals in Lancaster participated in a major ethnographic study of their travel and mobility patterns, with particular focus on how disruptions to their lives affected these.

The work forms a significant underpinning to the development of the Flexi-mobility concept. The report concludes  that the  concepts of normality, routine and habit need to be discarded as the baselines for understanding mobility. People are constantly negotiating disruptions to their everyday mobility, and this suggests there is capacity for change that needs to be unlocked. Viewing mobility practice through ‘averages’ obscures our view of this capacity.


Ethnographic Study Report (final) March 2015

Click and Collect How changing business practices are changing how we travel

This paper for the Universities Transport Study Group conference explores the findings of a set of semi-structured interviews with grocery retailers and an industry body that supports these retailers. The interviews were aimed at exploring the changing business models that were occurring primarily within the grocery sector, how the grocery sector was responding to these changes and how these changes affected the shopping and travel practices of consumers. The paper will focus on one of these business models, the development of ‘click and collect’ and whether this has the potential to overcome some of the perceived barriers to an increase in online retailing.


Key findings show that shopping practices are changing, with the size of the weekly grocery shop reducing and an increase in local ‘top-up’ shopping trips. This is accompanied by an increase in the number of ‘metro’ or ‘local’ stores run by the big supermarkets, a different utilisation of space in the hypermarkets and the introduction of ‘click and collect’.
‘Click and collect’ was seen by the retailers to have the biggest potential for growth in online retailing. It has obvious benefits to the retailer by encouraging people to visit the store, increasing footfall and giving rise to the opportunity to pick up additional shopping, but it is unclear how such changes in shopping behaviours affect travel practices.

This paper exploresthe different ‘click and collect’ models, including,
• On line purchase and collection of goods purchased from the same retailer
• On line purchase and collection of goods purchased from a third party retailer
• On line purchase and collection of goods purchased from other retailers in the same chain.
• On line purchase and collection from lockers in non-retail outlets.
It will then move on to investigate how these changes to shopping practices could affect travel practices and the likely outcomes for carbon emissions.