Becoming Urban Cyclists: From Socialization to Skills

Becoming Urban Cyclists: From Socialization to Skills


Becoming Urban Cyclists: From Socialization to Skills

Edited by Matthieu Adam and Nathalie Ortar

Since the turn of the 21st century, cycling has been re-considered as utilitarian transport. Starting generally from a very low percentage of modal share, it has surged in many major cities of the Global North. Cycling is being progressively integrated into mobility and urban planning programmes and infrastructure, although allocated budgets remain small compared to those for motor transport. However, this is not enough to turn cities into cycling spaces. Becoming an urban cyclist requires a variety of skills and sets of knowledge achieved through different forms of socialization. “Becoming” expresses the focus on this process, which can vary with culture, gender and social space, but also with topography, technical developments like electrification, residential and occupational location, the social environments in which riders grew up and national or local campaigns to promote cycling.

This volume uses qualitative, quantitative and mixed methods and is based on fieldwork conducted in Australia, France, Germany, Switzerland and the UK. It focuses on the acquisition of skills and competences and supplements existing work by linking cycling practices to individual life courses and to gender and social inequalities. Through a multidisciplinary approach utilizing the different perspectives of the authors as anthropologists, geographers, linguists,  sociologists and urban planners, it sheds light on geographical and sociological differences to help understand factors  likely to facilitate or curb urban cycling practices.


Introduction: Matthieu Adam and Nathalie Ortar              
Chapter 1: Becoming an Urban Cycling Space - Peter Cox
Chapter 2: Conducting Interviews with Maps and Videos to Capture Cyclists’ Skills and Expertise - Matthieu Adam, Nathalie Ortar, Luc Merchez, Georges-Henry Laffont and Hervé Rivano    
Chapter 3: Key Events, Motivations and Prior Experience in E-Bike Adoption - Dimitri Marincek
Chapter 4: The Effects of a Promotional Campaign on the Practice of Utility Cycling: Bike-to-work in Switzerland - Patrick Rérat
Chapter 5: Promoting Urban Cycling: An Ecolinguistic and Discursive Approach - M. Cristina Caimotto
Chapter 6: Adult Beginner Cyclists in French Cities - Thomas Buhler
Chapter 7: Immigration Background and Cycling—Findings from Germany - Janina Welsch
Chapter 8: What Makes Women Stop or Start Cycling in France? - David Sayagh, Clément Dusong and Francis Papon    
Chapter 9: Appropriating the Bicycle: Repair and Maintenance Skills and the Bicycle–Cyclist Relationship - Margot Abord de Chatillon    
Afterword: Rachel Aldred

Ordering Information

Matthieu Adam and Nathalie Ortar, Becoming Urban Cyclists: From Socialization to Skills, 2022, ISBN 978-1-910481-17-2, £19.99.

Copies can be purchased directly from the publisher using this ordering system and through booksellers and distributors. This order is for print books only and these are despatched through the postal system (postage and packing free in the UK, postage only applicable elsewhere). The ebook version is available through Google Play and library collections including EBSCO, Ebook Central and Gardners. E-books are available through Google Play and through library collections, such as EBSCO, Ebook Central and Gardners.

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