Mapping Glasgow:
Transporting Futures

Exploring the impact of public transportation on Glasgow through transformational change and community empowerment.


Masters Thesis Project
Research, speculation &
transformation design
Designed and faciliated in collaboration with bus users, public transportation experts, and Get Glasgow Moving.

Read the full thesis

In the media:
︎︎︎GSA Postgraduate Showcase

o.1 Identification

Proposed concept

This is a conceptual project developed in cooperation with Glasgow communities, using participatory methods and speculative design challenges to create transformational social change.

Collaborators include:
Get Glasgow Moving, Centre for Civic Innovation; Glasgow School of Art

The outcome is an empowerment focused bus co-operative whereby community members and transit riders are offered the opportunity to take control of their public transportation and regain influence as citizens. This is achieved by humanising UK public transportation after it’s de-regulation in 1986.

0.2 Context and Understanding

Research & Key Insights

  • Context development
  • Stakeholder mapping
  • Secondary research analysis
  • Understanding core issues

Why transportation?
Transport poverty is pervasive in the UK, with over one million Scots at risk (The Poverty Alliance & OXFAM, 2019). Described as ‘Left Behind Neighbourhoods’ by Better Transport, and Local Trust publication, these neighbourhoods are, by definition, areas that experience poor connectivity (2021).

Embracing an underutilised resource
How might it be possible to transform these neighbourhoods, and empower the residents that live there to take action, to seek viable sustainability?

0.3 Discovery

Community & Impact

  • Interviews with experts and transit users
  • Autoethnography
  • Activism Outreach
  • Journey Mapping

The public transit user
 Vulnerable riders are needs are less likely to be met, even though they are the ones at greatest risk from change.
  • Vulnerable riders are time poor, unable to attend engagment meetings
  • Build workshops and interviews around rider schedules - go to them. 
  • One-on-one micro-workshops, collaborating by “sending” pieces of their work to the next participant to build upon.
  • Grant agency and ownership over the final outcome to transport users. 

0.3 Development

Service Building & Outcome

  • Participatory micro-workshops
  • Application of social theory to design
  • Blueprint for future co-operative structure

A bus co-op could be the next step to seeing sustainable change.
  • Private bus companies are hard to work with and limit collaboration opportunities. 
  • Fares need to be affordable, communicationtransparent, riders  respected and routes are reliable.
  • Using transformation design theory to apply speculative workshop outcomes

04. Watch

Ride the Bus: Stories of Glasgow Transit Users

Ride ther BUs