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  • 1.
    Sandow, Erika
    Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Social and Economic Geography.
    Commuting behaviour in sparsely populated areas: evidence from northern Sweden2008In: Journal of Transport Geography, ISSN 0966-6923, E-ISSN 1873-1236, Vol. 16, no 1, 14-27 p.Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    From a Swedish regional development policy perspective, increased long-distance commuting is viewed as a means for creating larger local labour markets and thus stimulating regional economic growth. One of the prerequisites for such a development is that individuals are willing to commute longer distances. In the context of a relatively peripheral and sparsely populated area in northern Sweden, this paper aims to study commuting behaviour and factors influencing individuals’ propensities to commute longer distances. Using a longitudinal set of geo-referenced data, individuals’ commuting propensities were estimated in a binary logistic regression, and significant effects were found for a range of socio-economic and demographic factors. The results also show that the local labour market’s geographical structure is important. Overall, most individuals commute within their locality of residence and women commute shorter distances than men do – a pattern that has been relatively stable since the beginning of the 1990s. This article attempts to outline causes and effects of this commuting behaviour, which are important to understand in the development of regional development policies aimed at increasing geographical labour mobility.

  • 2.
    Sandow, Erika
    Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Social and Economic Geography.
    On the road: Social aspects of commuting long distances to work2011Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    With its point of departure of increasing numbers of people being engaged in commuting, the aim of this thesis is to reveal prerequisites for and consequences of long-distance commuting in Sweden for the individual and his or her partner. Special attention has been given to prerequisites for long-distance commuting in sparsely populated areas, and to social consequences related to long-distance commuting in terms of gender differences in commuting patterns, earnings and separation. The thesis is based on four empirical studies, presented in different papers. Two studies draw on individual longitudinal register data on all Swedish long-distance commuters living with a partner. The other two focus on commuting behaviour in sparsely populated areas, one based on individual register data and the other on a survey.

    Long-distance commuting (>30 kilometres) has become an increasingly common mobility strategy among Swedish workers and their households. Results from the thesis show that 11 percent of Swedish workers are long-distance commuters and about half of them live in a relationship. Among these couples many are families with children, indicating the importance of social ties in households’ decisions on where to work and live. Most long-distance commuters are men, and it is also likely that long-distance commuters have a high education level and are employed in the private sector. For the majority, long-distance commuting gives higher earnings; however, men benefit economically more than women do. As long-distance commuting reduces available family time, the non-commuting spouse often takes on a larger share of household commitments. The thesis shows that men’s long-distance commuting may therefore serve to reproduce and reinforce traditional gender roles on the labour market and within households. On the other hand, women’s long-distance commuting can lead to more equalitarian relationships on the labour market and within households. For the majority of couples it seems as if long-distance commuting becomes more than a temporary mobility strategy, while for some couples it does not work out very well. Separation rates are found to be higher among long-distance commuters compared to other couples; especially the first years of commuting seem to be the most challenging. It is suggested that coping strategies are important to make the consequences of long-distance commuting easier to handle and adjust to in the daily life puzzle. For those unable to handle these consequences, long-distance commuting is not a sustainable mobility strategy and can even end a relationship.

    The extent of long-distance commuting is low in sparsely populated areas, and those who do long-distance commute are mainly men. Most people work and live within the same locality and do not accept longer commuting times than do those in densely populated areas. In this thesis it is argued that facilitating car commuting in the more sparsely populated areas of Sweden can be more economically and socially sustainable, for the individual commuters as well as for society, than encouraging commuting by public transportation.

  • 3.
    Sandow, Erika
    et al.
    Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Centre for Population Studies (CPS). Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Geography and Economic History, Economic and social geography.
    Westerlund, Olle
    Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Economics. Jyväskylä University School of Business and Economics, Finland.
    Lindgren, Urban
    Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Geography and Economic History, Economic and social geography.
    Is your commute killing you?: On the mortality risks of long-distance commuting2014In: Environment and planning A, ISSN 0308-518X, E-ISSN 1472-3409, Vol. 46, no 6, 1496-1516 p.Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    There is a general belief that expanding labour-market regions, triggered by increased commuting, have positive economic effects on individuals, firms, and society. Recently, however, scholars have reported possible negative outcomes related to health and well-being. Based on these findings, this study addresses the association between long-distance commuting, and mortality. Using longitudinal individual data from between 1985 and 2008, focusing on 55-year-olds in 1994, we model mortality through propensity score matching and Kaplan–Meyer estimates of survival among long-distance commuters and matched controls from the population travelling short distances to work. The results indicate that women who have experienced long-distance commuting face a significantly higher mortality risk compared with women with short commutes to work. This seems to be driven by variations in income and education: for example, for women with long-distance commuting experience, substantially lower survival rates are found among those with low education and low income. A very different picture emerges for men, for whom mortality risks do not seem to be associated with long-distance commuting. Our findings suggest that men and women are subject to different mechanisms regarding the nexus between commuting and mortality.

  • 4.
    Sandow, Erika
    et al.
    Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Social and Economic Geography. Transportation Research Unit (TRUM).
    Westin, Kerstin
    Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Social and Economic Geography. Transportation Research Unit (TRUM).
    Att resa till arbetet i befolkningsmässigt glesa miljöer2005Report (Other (popular science, discussion, etc.))
  • 5.
    Sandow, Erika
    et al.
    Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Social and Economic Geography.
    Westin, Kerstin
    Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Social and Economic Geography.
    Peoples preferences for commuting in sparsely populated areas: 9th NECTAR conference in Porto, Portugal, May 9-12 20072007Conference paper (Other (popular science, discussion, etc.))
  • 6.
    Sandow, Erika
    et al.
    Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Social and Economic Geography. Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Transportation Research Unit (TRUM).
    Westin, Kerstin
    Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Social and Economic Geography. Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Transportation Research Unit (TRUM).
    Regionförstoring i glesa områden – Kollektivtrafikens möjligheter och betydelse2007Report (Other academic)
  • 7.
    Sandow, Erika
    et al.
    Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Social and Economic Geography.
    Westin, Kerstin
    Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Transportation Research Unit (TRUM).
    The persevering commuter: Duration of long-distance commuting2010In: Transportation Research Part A: Policy and Practice, ISSN 0965-8564, E-ISSN 1879-2375, Vol. 44, no 6, 433-445 p.Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    A growing number of people are long-distance commuters. For some long-distance commuting is a temporary solution, while as for others it can be a more long-term strategy to promote career and income. This study addresses duration of long-distance commuting – 30 km or more between home and work – in Sweden, and what characterizes individuals who commute for shorter or longer periods. The effects of long-distance commuting in terms of economic outcome for both partners in a commuter household are analysed. The study is based on register data for the years 1995–2005 covering all long-distance commuters in Sweden. One finding is that previous experience of long-distance commuting makes it more likely to have a long duration of long-distance commuting. In addition economic incentives, such as a higher income, are positively correlated for continuing to long-distance commuting more than a few years. Furthermore, the analysis shows that male commuters benefit more in terms of economic outcome of long-distance commuting. It is concluded that the trend with increasing long-distance commuting can sustain not only gender differences on the labour market but also within households. Finally, the paper indicates that long-distance commuting is a strategic mobility choice for households, rather than a short-term solution for a few years.

  • 8.
    Sandow, Erika
    et al.
    Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Social and Economic Geography. Transportation Research Unit (TRUM).
    Westin, Kerstin
    Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Social and Economic Geography. Transportation Research Unit (TRUM).
    Vill människor pendla längre?2006Report (Other (popular science, discussion, etc.))
1 - 8 of 8
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