It is difficult to imagine a world without the car, and yet that is exactly what Dennis and Urry set out to do in this provocative new book. They argue that the days of the car are numbered: powerful forces around the world are undermining the car system and will usher in a new transport system sometime in the next few decades. Specifically, the book examines how several major processes are shaping the future of how we travel, including:
• Global warming and its many global consequences
• Peaking of oil supplies
• Increased digitisation of many aspects of economic and social life
• Massive global population increases
The authors look at changes in technology, policy, economy and society, and make a convincing argument for a future where, by necessity, the present car system will be re-designed and re-engineered.
Yet the book also suggests that there are some hugely bleak dilemmas facing the twenty first century. The authors lay out what they consider to be possible ‘post-car’ future scenarios. These they describe as ‘local sustainability’, ‘regional warlordism’ and ‘digital networks of control’.
After The Car will be of great interest to planners, policy makers, social scientists, futurologists, those working in industry, as well as general readers.
Some have described the 20th Century as the century of the car. Now that century has come to a close – and things are about to change.