Do randomised control trials offer a solution to 'low quality' transport research?

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Melia, S. (2015) Do randomised control trials offer a solution to 'low quality' transport research? In: 47th Annual UTSG Conference, London, UK, 5-7 January 2015. London: Universities Transport Studies Group Available from:

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This article responds to Graham-Rowe et al. (2011), which categorised 77 evaluations of transport interventions into 5 levels of ‘quality’. This article focuses on Graham-Rowe et al.’s treatment of randomised controlled trials (RCTs) and their recommendation, also made by others, that RCTs should be used ‘wherever possible’ in transport research. It analyses the RCTs reviewed by Graham-Rowe et al. and the hierarchy of research methods they use. It proposes 5 criteria for the valid application of RCTs, which it argues would imply that the circumstances in transport studies where RCTs are demonstrably superior to other methods are very limited. It finds no valid justification for a hierarchy of methods and argues that attempting to apply such a hierarchy would generate misleading advice for policy makers.

Item Type: Conference or Workshop Item (Paper)
Uncontrolled Keywords: randomised control trials, voluntary travel behaviour change, modal shift, research methodology
Faculty/Department: Faculty of Environment and Technology
Faculty of Environment and Technology > Department of Geography and Environmental Management
Depositing User: J. Triggle
Date Deposited: 06 Dec 2011 15:33
Last Modified: 13 Nov 2018 06:07


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