What does the Conference have to offer
The Conference brings together one of a kind speakers and industry pioneers to share their incites.
The vast variety of experiences and opportunities available ensures you’ll walk away with countless new connections.
Create, collaborate and connect with your peers. Meet others in the same field, facing similar challenges in the transport industry.
Conferences are always more fun with friends, and the this one is no exception. Attend for a once in a lifetime experience.
Inclusive and sustainable public transport systems
Safety and security are prerequisites for inclusive and sustainable public transport systems. What lessons can we learn from countries that have attempted to address women’s and vulnerable groups mobility needs and address their safety and security concerns?
Increasing career options for women in public transport
The transport sector needs more women in transport-based jobs in order to design transport systems that fully consider women’s needs when traveling. What are the measures required to increase female employment in public transport that will ultimately lead to attainment of non-gender-biased goals?
Securing the future of public transport with technology
The public transportation system is on the brink of a technological revolution. What are those technological innovations out there and what would it take to effectively implement them to positively transform public transport in Africa?
How do the pollution and climate change solutions that currently exist take gender into consideration or not in regard to: health, non-motorized transport, electric mobility, and valuing the natural world?
The broad objective of the conference is to stimulate and highlight new research, interventions and trends on women, children, and PWDs and mobility issues in Africa. The specific objectives are:
- To bring together civil society, policymakers, city authorities, researchers, academicians, practitioners and students amongst other stakeholders from the African region to discuss and highlight solutions to the longstanding issues relating to women, children and PWDs and transportation; and
- To support and give a platform to practitioners to share their experiences, challenges, and inform policy, research, and interventions.
Women use public transport more than men. There travel partners also differ since women travel longer distance than men and thus spend more time commuting. Our Mobility of Care Assessment of Nairobi’s Public Service Vehicle (PSV) Sector report reveals that women make more care and household-related trips, taking longer, numerous and more complicated trips per day in comparison to their male counterparts.
Transport is a traditionally male-dominated sector, both from an employment point of view and for the values it embodies. Few women are employed in the public transport sector making them massively under-represented. In Kenya, the situation is even dire at below 10% as indicated in a recent gender equity assessment by Flone Initiative in selected SACCOs in Nairobi. 85% of women in the matatu sector work as conductors. According to International Labour Organisation (ILO), poor working conditions render the transport sector unappealing to women, most notably concerning working time, shift-working (24/7), and the location of employment (e.g. on-board a vessel at sea, driving a truck long distances from home) makes it difficult and at times impossible to reconcile work and family commitments. Jobs in the transport sector are highly gendered and unequal. As a result, women’s voices are all too often neglected when it comes to transport planning and the pursuit of decent work in this sector. Transport is still regarded as ‘no place for women’ in many countries/sectors around the world. Women in the transport sector often find themselves stuck in lower-paid/lower status jobs with few, if any, opportunities for career development.
With the advent of COVID-19, 52% of women in the public transport sector in Kenya have lost their jobs as a result of matatu owners closing down their business due to restrictions imposed to contain COVID-19. This has resulted in an 83% reduction in their daily earnings as they now take home between 100 and 200 Kshs after a days’ job as touts in matatu stages. 55% of them being single parents, most of them are unable to provide for their families. Some who are servicing loans from savings and credit cooperative societies (SACCOs) are likely to default. As a mitigation measure, they are considering moving to cheaper housing, skipping meals and suspending their monthly savings. Being a sector dominated by men, some of their male colleagues take advantage of the situation and ask for sexual favours in exchange for jobs.
Violence against transport workers is one of the most important factors limiting the attraction of transport jobs for women and breaking the retention of those who are employed in the transport sector. Violence manifests itself both in the form of physical and psychological violence. It ranges from physical attacks to verbal insults, bullying, mobbing, and harassment, including sexual and gender-based harassment. Most women who use public transport feel exposed to physical or verbal aggression, sexual harassment and other forms of violence. 73% of PSV operators in Mombasa County have heard or witnessed cases of sexual harassment within public transportation spaces. 87% of them took no action when they saw or experienced sexual harassment. The unfortunate reality is public transportation is neither planned nor designed from a gender perceptive.
As urbanization increases, densely populated areas will face transportation issues. The number of vehicles on the roads will double and triple, resulting in increased congestion on our streets, increased environmental pollution and increased CO2 emissions. We risk sinking deeper into the pit hole of the challenges highlighted above.
Bureaucratic red tapes and a general lack of good will to embrace technological innovations as well as failure to implemented brilliantly formulated policies aimed at addressing these issues leaves us in a state of tokenistic public participation. Indeed, there is usually wide gaps between formulated policy and technological goals and the achievement of these goals as a result of ineffective implementation.