Ensuring access for remote and rural communities
45% of the population worldwide lives in rural areas. While the overall share of people living in predominantly rural remote areas has declined, there are multiple economic pressures that justify developing better connectivity for these communities. For example, access to economic opportunities, health and education is low and geographical distance to major markets means higher costs for services and goods. Economic crisis has disproportionately affected remote rural regions and remote rural areas often face double demographic pressure, with both higher shares of elderly and young populations with diverse mobility needs (OECD 2016 & 2019).
Policy makers have put in place diverse policies supporting connectivity for remote communities. As the costs of addressing connectivity of low-density areas are often an issue, governments seek to increase the effectiveness and efficiency of their policies (ITF, 2018).
This session will explore the national policies developed in ITF countries and how effective they are in delivering regional and remote connectivity across all transport modes. The session will aim at answering the following questions:
- How to measure the level of connectivity of remote communities and identify critical gaps in coverage?
- How to quantify the costs and benefits of policy measures to support regional connectivity?
- How to develop efficient policy frameworks for supporting regional connectivity?
Note: This session will serve as an input to a high-level ITF Expert Event hosted by Transport Canada in Ottawa at the end of September 2019.
ITF (2018), “Government Support Measures for Domestic Air Connectivity”, https://www.itf-oecd.org/sites/default/files/docs/domestic-air-connectivity_0.pdf
OECD (2016), “OECD Regional Outlook”, http://www.oecd.org/regional/oecd-regions-at-a-glance-19990057.htm
OECD (2019), “OECD Regional Outlook”, http://www1.oecd.org/fr/regional/oecd-regional-outlook-2019-9789264312838-en.htm