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Alan E. Pisarski, Independent Consultant Travel Behavior

Speaker: Alan E. Pisarski, Independent Consultant Travel Behavior

Alan Pisarski will draw on two major statistical sources: the first is his recent study Commuting in America II. This work documents forty years of vends in American commuting patterns and associated demographic and land development change. The second source is the just released 1995 National personal Transportation Survey results, which identify emerging transportation and social issues.

Both of these sources document the conflicts between current public travel behavior and extant public policy prescriptions. The American public is just not behaving in ways that planners would have them behave Are there any socioeconomic trends which might suggest shifting public behavior? Should we invent planners' people? How does public policy function in this environment and still make claims to any relevancy?

While America on average has reached "saturation" in many areas - vehicles, drivers licenses, perhaps vehicle miles of travel - these averages mask the fact that significant segments of the society are outside the dominant mobility process. Current policy recognition of the needs of these groups, who have suddenly been noticed, arising largely from "welfare to work" programs, will need to react to these realities. Will the policies respond to the needs and preferences of users and prospective users or the needs of transportation program managers? Are these people customers or clients? Recognizing that the major sources of increased travel demand in the future will be from these populations - the democratization of travel - bow does that square with goals to "manage." i.e. suppress, travel demand? Hard questions!

For almost 30 years Alan E. Pisarski has been involved in the national transportation policy scene, from positions in the Office of the Secretary, U.S. DOT, or in a consulting capacity. He has participated in the preparation of every major national policy document since the creation of the Department Prior to joining DOT he served as Chief of Data Collection and Analysis of the Metropolitan Washington Council of Governments and began his career as Assistant to the Technical Director in the Tri-State Transportation Commission in New York.

He is perhaps best known for his major studies of American commuting patterns produce for a consortium of public interest groups, entitled "Commuting in America" and Commuting in America II." For that last 14 years Mr. Pisarski has served as an independent consultant in travel and transportation here and abroad. Services are provided to public and private clients in areas related to travel behavior, transport policy, analysis and data development.

His work has been related to transportation and particular commuting has been reviewed, discussed and quoted in all of the major national news magazines, and newspapers. He recently served as content advisor to a three hour NPR public television series on transportation and has appeared on major national radio and television network programs including "Night-line" and "20120" discussing national transportation issues. His work has been translated into at least six languages. Many of his studies have proven to be landmark events guiding national policy and legislative change.

Mr. Pisarski serves as Chair of the Transportation Research Board Committee on National Transportation Statistics and also chairs the Group Council of TRB On interdisciplinary Activities. He has joint degrees in Economics and Sociology from CCNY/Queens College.