A comparison study of children's independent mobility in England and Australia


We compared independent mobility (freedom to move around the neighbourhood – or similar – without adult accompaniment) among English and Australian schoolchildren. Parents reported mobility licences granted to their children (e.g. allowing them to cross main roads alone) and accompaniment on local trips. Children reported travel mode to school. We examined associations between mobility licences and independent school journeys, and accompaniment on local trips. Among 10–12-year-olds, English children had more licences than Australian children. Mobility licences were directly associated with independent school journeys among primary but not among secondary schoolchildren who travelled further; and inversely associated with parental accompaniment to other destinations. Influences on parental restrictions should be examined to promote children’s independent mobility.

Alison Carver, Ben Watson, Ben Shaw & Mayer Hillman (2013) A comparison study of children’s independent mobility in England and Australia, Children’s Geographies, 11:4,
461-475, DOI: 10.1080/14733285.2013.812303

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