The University of Oxford's innovative short-course programme in sustainable transport - Global Challenges in Transport is designed to provide the 'rising stars' and leaders of tomorrow with the necessary knowledge, skills and expertise, supported by the latest research evidence to address the complexity of issues associated with making transport sustainable.

The programme is run by the University's world-renowned Transport Studies Unit (TSU).


The overall programme comprises four independent but complementary 4-day Continuing Professional Development (CPD) accredited courses. Participants can register for as many or as few courses as they wish. Those completing all four courses benefit from a discounted overall programme fee. The four courses within the programme are:

Infrastructure, Development and Finance (6 - 9 September 2016)

Infrastructure, Development and Finance

This course explores the relationships between transport infrastructure, investment, and economic development within developed and developing countries. It examines the economic, social and environmental contribution of a range of transport investment projects, including those associated with 'mega-projects', megacities, poverty and equity, labour markets, and agglomeration economies.

Key speakers include: Professor Naomi Brookes (University of Leeds); Professor Harry Dimitriou (UCL Bartlett); Satyaki Raghunath (MAG Airports Group).

See the programme for the forthcoming September 2016 course [PDF: 436.3 KB]

New Technologies and Changing Behaviours (14 - 17 March 2017)

Oxford bus. © Andre Neves.

This course examines the evolution and uptake of contemporary mobility systems. Individual sessions will explore emerging contemporary mobility cultures in different global regions, diffusion and new perspectives on the role of technology in changing behaviours and energy reduction, and the sociocultural dynamics of behaviour change. The course additionally offers an overview of new and emerging smart technologies and behavioural intervention programmes and provides insights into current projects and initiatives across the globe.

Key speakers include: Dr Robin Hickman (UCL); Dr Lorraine Whitmarsh (Cardiff University), Professor Graham Parkhurst (UWE Bristol).

See last year's programme

Governance, Policy and Delivery (27 - 30 June 2017)

Governance, Policy and Delivery

This course explores the role of different actors, organisations and institutions in the creation, management and evolution of transport systems in various global contexts. The lectures and interactive workshops explore how policies are formulated and implemented at a range of spatial scales, and how such interventions vary in terms of effectiveness and efficiency. The course also looks into decision-making and the issues of acceptability and governance with sessions focusing on the mobility requirements for both rural and urban societies globally.

Key speakers include: Professor Iain Docherty (University of Glasgow); Dr Michael Synnott (Warwick Business School); Dr James Palmer (University of Oxford); Heather Allen (TRL).

See the June 2016 programme [PDF: 181.1 KB]

Health, Wellbeing and Urban Mobility (December 2017, date TBC)

Cycling London. © Andre Neves.

This course concentrates on the relationships between urban form and design, mobility practices, and physical and mental well-being. Sessions will address the historical and future links between urban environments and health at a range of spatial scales and in a range of geographical contexts. Particular emphases will be placed on the issues of social equity, providing sustainable access to services and the potential contribution of walking, cycling and public transport services to healthy cities.

Key speakers include: Dr Lesley Murray (University of Brighton); Dr David Ogilvie (Cambridge University); Professor Glenn Lyons (UWE); Dr Adrian Davis (University of Bristol).

See last year's programme


To register for one of our courses please complete the following application form:

For more information on how to register, please email . Each course within the programme includes all meals and accommodation*. Special corporate rates apply if you nominate three or more colleagues from your organisation. Alumni discounts will apply if you would like to study multiple programmes.

Fees for 2016 (per course)

  • Private Sector: 3500
  • Public Sector / Academic Rate: 1500
  • PhD: 500

* if you live in Oxford please contact us for the non-residential option

Dr Tim Schwanen

"This programme represents a fantastic opportunity for future international leaders with an interest in transport to come together and discuss some of the most pressing issues facing modern societies. Efficient and sustainable transport networks are critical to the success of the global economy, yet managing transport is not just about creating the infrastructure, but also understanding the much bigger context that embeds transport in issues like globalisation, social justice, resource scarcity, and climate change."

Dr Tim Schwanen, Director of Oxford's TSU.


All participants on the Leadership Programme will receive a certificate of attendance from Oxford University.


Each course is delivered over four days in the pleasant surroundings of Kellogg College, Oxford, with all accommodation and meals provided including a welcome lunch on arrival and a 'Formal Networking Dinner' with special guest speakers.

Course accommodation is included in the programme fees (three night's en-suite accommodation, with breakfast). All participants stay in Kellogg College's newly refurbished property at 12 Bradmore Road, Oxford, OX2 6QN. The property backs onto the College Grounds and is part of its Norham Manor site, which is conveniently located close to most Oxford University departments, libraries and the town centre.

Please note: There is strictly no parking available on-site.

All rooms are beautifully finished, are spacious and have en-suite facilities. Linen and bedding is provided, a flat screen television, and coffee and tea making facilities. There is a shared kitchen, as well as a comfortable communal living room where you can relax and spend time with other participants. All meals and refreshments are served in College.

Kellogg College © John Cairns

Image © John Cairns

Kellogg College © David Fisher

Image © David Fisher

Kellogg College © David Fisher

Image © David Fisher

Kellogg College © David Fisher

Image © David Fisher


The course fees include:

  • Attendance at all sessions;
  • Three nights full board accommodation at Kellogg College, with breakfast, lunch and dinner including a welcome lunch on arrival and a 'Formal Networking Dinner' with special guest speakers (non-residential option available which excludes accommodation, breakfasts and dinners);
  • Morning and afternoon tea and coffee;
  • Teaching materials and course guide;
  • Oxford University Certificate of Attendance; and
  • 21 hours contact time with lecturers and tutors from industry, policy, practice and academia

Delegates can register for any number of courses, and when all four are booked at the same time the final course is free. Organisations making multiple bookings for their staff should enquire about our group discounts - please email for further information.


Details of funding opportunities, including grants, bursaries, loans, scholarships and benefit information are available from Students taking this course may be eligible for a career development loan. A Rees Jefferys Road Fund scholarship (UK applicants only - please see testimonials) and a Transport Studies Unit scholarship are available. Please email for details and to apply.