two women in front seats of car

On the Burden and Necessity of Car Ownership

A Vox article on car ownership as both burden and necessity cited research conducted by two UCLA Luskin urban planning professors, Evelyn Blumenberg and Michael Manville. The way a car unlocks access to almost everything ensures that most people will, despite the costs, do whatever they can to obtain one, the story said. While reducing car use overall has been a priority for policymakers, increasing the availability of vehicles to low-income people is an important step toward reducing economic inequality. The story cited a study by Blumenberg demonstrating the increasing importance of cars for women with limited means, due to the suburbanization of poverty, women’s participation in the workforce and their unique household responsibilities. Research co-authored by Manville documented the falling socioeconomic status of American households without private vehicles and the continuing financial burden that cars present for low-income households that own them.


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