David Perez Barbosa


 Name: David Perez Barbosa
 Department: IDEC
 Course: Social Implementation Course
 Research Field: Transportation engineering
 Supervisor: ZHANG, Junyi


Career and Academic Background before TAOYAKA Program

I graduated as civil engineer at the National University of Colombia with a focus on transportation. In my place of origin, Bogota, an extensive network of exclusive bikeways and cycle-paths was built about 15 years ago, and that made the bicycle modal share increase from less than 1% to an approximate of 4 – 5 % where I could be counted in. As a bicycle commuter, I started to be concerned on how to make the travel conditions for urban cyclists safer and better – that was my first motivation to choose transportation as my specialization course for the civil engineering career.

After graduation, I worked doing research in road-safety related topics, such as the design of road traffic signs and the conceptual design of a national road safety observatory. I also worked as an information analyst at the Road Safety department of the Secretariat of Mobility in Bogota, where my team and I were in charge of monitoring the occurrence of traffic-related accidents, injuries and fatalities; locating black spots and proposing remediation measures in order to improve the road safety conditions of the urban roads in Bogota.

Research Plan in TAOYAKA Program

The relationship between urban transport and poverty is complex to understand, and it has not been sufficiently investigated in developed societies, let alone the developing countries of the world. Poverty is a multidimensional concept that involves several other aspects of daily life when we focus beyond its monetary dimension. The inadequate access to transportation services can contribute to poverty by restricting the set of activities or services that urban dwellers may access, and therefore their access to opportunities that would improve their quality of life. This is what we call “transport-based social exclusion”. From the perspective of transportation planning, by incorporating sustainable and socially inclusive transportation services in future policy making, there is much that can be done to alleviate the poverty related needs of the most vulnerable sectors of the population.

Career Plan after TAOYAKA Program

With Global urbanization, cities will continue to increase in size and diversity – people of every country in the world will migrate in search of greater opportunities and a better future. Therefore, the challenges for urban planners are big. Cities need to cope with the increasing demand of services, including transportation services, which are accessible, sustainable, affordable, safe and comfortable enough so the citizens can enjoy good and reasonable opportunities for their mobility, regardless of income, location or social status. An adequate urban planning policy together with the provision of infrastructure for public and non-motorized transportation plays a fundamental role for this objective. After the completion of the TAOYAKA program, my future career focus will be in international cooperation projects related to urban planning and transportation, to provide for more socially inclusive transport opportunities and ultimately contribute to the creation of more sustainable and livable cities.