Road Safety: Changing from stern lectures to the psychology of users

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I saw an old community announcement film the other day from about 1947 which was a piece about road safety.

The message was being delivered by a man in a mortar board hat and academic gown writing things on a black board. It was the style that dominated road safety education for many years and still does now in some cases – the formal lecture to students who just had to sit and listen as to what they were doing wrong.

We have seen some significant changes in education in general and in road safety in particular. Should we move away from the fear based formal lecture and if so to what.  Traffic and transport started very much in the realm of engineering.

A recent conference in Brisbane was titled International Conference on Traffic and Transport Psychology. Is this just academic dreaming or is this the right direction and does it have practical applications.

Dr Barry Watson gave the key note address at the conference.  He is the Chief Executive Officer of the Global Road Safety Partnership (GRSP), which is hosted by the Federation of the Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies in Geneva, Switzerland.

Originally aired on 6 August 2016. For past programs and individual segments visit


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