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Who Decides? Toward a Typology of Transit Governance

College of Health and Public Service, University of North Texas, Denton, TX 76201, USA
Department of Geography, University of Connecticut, Storrs, CT 06269, USA
School of Geographical Sciences and Urban Planning, Arizona State University, Tempe, AZ 85287, USA
Authors to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Urban Sci. 2021, 5(1), 6;
Received: 1 December 2020 / Revised: 20 December 2020 / Accepted: 23 December 2020 / Published: 31 December 2020
This article describes a typology for formal governance structures of public transit in the United States to support inquiry into how organizational structures influence policy making processes, organizational capacity and policy outcomes. Scholarship of public transit has largely explored outcome-based research while paying less attention to how decisions are made. Despite some transport scholarship that shows how institutional characteristics influence financing, power arrangements and public discourse, there has been little recent analysis of governance within public transit systems beyond the regional role of Metropolitan Planning Organizations (MPOs). Using data from multiple sources, we assembled a database of governance structure of transit systems in the largest 40 cities in the United States. We show that the structure of transit decision making has substantial variance across and within cities, and is far from limited to MPOs. The variety of governance models and growth of local and sub-local models suggest that local context is critical for better understanding transit priorities and decision-making processes. View Full-Text
Keywords: public transport; governance; organizational structure; advisory boards public transport; governance; organizational structure; advisory boards
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MDPI and ACS Style

Fischer, L.A.; Ray, R.S.; King, D.A. Who Decides? Toward a Typology of Transit Governance. Urban Sci. 2021, 5, 6.

AMA Style

Fischer LA, Ray RS, King DA. Who Decides? Toward a Typology of Transit Governance. Urban Science. 2021; 5(1):6.

Chicago/Turabian Style

Fischer, Lauren Ames, Rosalie Singerman Ray, and David A. King. 2021. "Who Decides? Toward a Typology of Transit Governance" Urban Science 5, no. 1: 6.

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