Behavioural Design: What Urban Planners Can Learn From Sweden.


by Karishma Rajaratnam

Sweden’s success in reducing its road related deaths has been a hot topic in recent months, with both the Economist blog and Fast Company featuring its successful road design. According to The Economist “Sweden’s roads have become the world’s safest”, with road deaths last year hitting a record low. Overall, the number of deaths due to road accidents in Sweden has fallen by four fifths since 1970. Despite their attempts, other developed countries such as America and those across the EU have not been as successful as Sweden in reducing road related deaths.

Sweden’s developed roads and pedestrian crossings are clearly a result of the skill and technique of its designers and urban planners, in coalition with technological advances that make progressive design possible. However, if skilled labour and technology are the sole contributing factors in reducing transport related deaths, why then, do many developed countries (which…

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Author: Shane O'Mara

Neuroscientist, Psychologist, Writer