Sustainable transport has become a current and important ambition for transport planners and policy-makers around the world. In Denmark, this is confirmed in a political agreement on a ‘Green Transport Policy’, where significant new policies have been announced. A transition to sustainable transport raises important questions concerning the organization of national, planning processes integrating sustainability. In Denmark the effectiveness of the previous ‘ad hoc’ approach has been questioned, and some planning innovations have been adopted, like longer time frames, fixed planning cadences and coherent, strategic analyses. Internationally, transdisciplinary research on national, sustainable transport planning is limited and it is not established as a coherent field of research. The ambition of this paper is to contribute to this new field of research by establishing understandings and definitions of national sustainable transport planning. This will be done by distinguishing between existing national transport planning frameworks; those frameworks that attempt to incorporate sustainability; and a more elaborate and or ideal concept of national sustainable transport planning. Selected literature on national sustainable transport planning and associated terms form the basis of the paper, and since, neighbouring Norway and Sweden have for a number of years produced major, national transport plans, experiences from these two countries have already been subject to analyses, and will work as examples in the paper.
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Strategisk forskning i transport og infrastruktur, 2013