Good Practice

Gender in Mobility Planning

Improving public transport infrastructure to make it inclusive for women, children, and people with different mobility needs.

Catalan Government
Local policy


The Catalan Government (Generalitat de Catalunya) believes that mobility planning must consider the needs of all persons equally. Transport is a key contributor to:

  • Economic growth.
  • Socially sustainable development.
  • Improving information exchange.
  • Decreasing travel times.
  • Fostering social cohesion.

Meeting people’s needs better requires developing a structured approach, allowing us to:

  • Understand their needs.
  • Identify instruments to meet such needs.
  • Analyse costs and benefits of such instruments.
  • Establish an appropriate policy framework.

Women must participate in every step of the planning of transport investments


Transport is a traditionally male-dominated sector, and gender-sensitive issues are widely recognised as very relevant. The demands and experiences of women and men justify treating women’s mobility separately, taking into account significant differences in areas like travel and employment patterns, care for children and the elderly and care responsibilities.

We typically lack a knowledge base that serves as a tool to improve the quality of women’s travel experience. Such policy will guide how we manage public transport at the forefront of grassroots and gender-informed policymaking around mobility.


Around the world, gender is an increasingly recognised issue in transport policy and planning. Transport, for its part, is already on the gender policy agenda. Consequently, “gender and transport” occupy a professional terrain of new initiatives in which there are no systematic procedures for gender inclusion, whether in terms of professional training, user participation or system design and planning.

The initiatives to improve the quality of women’s travel experience include:

  • Transparent and well-lit bus shelters and bus stops, elimination of blind spots, remodelling of bus interchange centres.
  • Improved accessibility from a gender perspective at stations, platforms, and bus and train stops to increase the feeling of safety and comfort when travelling.
  • Real-time information on bus movements to avoid unnecessary waiting at bus stops.
  • Understanding women’s mobility patterns and travel experiences in relation to sexual violence.
  • Planning transport taking into account women’s needs.
  • Conducting gender-sensitive risk assessments when planning the location of public transport stops.
  • Promoting intermodality between modes of transport and ensuring safety are among the main objectives of spaces to promote the use of public transport resources.
  • Promoting flexible and intermediate bus stops at night.


This policy is innovative because it includes the gender perspective. The most important points:

  • Establishing a planning and design of the transport system taking into account women’s needs in the sector.
  • Designing public transport and public spaces to address the perception of insecurity.
  • Mainstreaming gender into the design of urban planning to make cities more inclusive and reduce sexual violence. Mainstreaming gender in transport and mobility planning and incorporating gender guidelines and criteria.
  • Engaging public transport users in citizen participation around the planning process.


The timetable is scheduled in two phases.

Phase 1 – Precedence and synergy relations

  • Precedence relations indicate conditions which are necessary to initiate measurements.
  • Synergy relations indicate measures which benefit from their sequential or parallel development, but do not indicate a condition.

Phase 2 – Characterising benefits and complexity of measures

Makes it possible to prioritise measures without precedence relations between them, according to two criteria:

  • Benefits (alignment with objectives, socioeconomic impact, strategic relevance, etc.)
  • Complexity (financial investment, legal constraints, implementation times, technological maturity, etc.)

Measures cannot be implemented simultaneously. They will be fully implemented in late 2023.

Lídia Devant


Head of Section for Equality Promotion

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