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Research and Innovation

Motability is determined to ensure that no disabled person in the UK is disadvantaged due to poor access to transportation. We know from disabled people that mobility gives them freedom and independence. It enables them to see friends, to work or study, or to participate fully in their communities. The Motability Scheme has transformed millions of lives but we want to go even further in the future.

To help us make even more impact, we want to build a better understanding of the transport needs of disabled people and the challenges that they face. We have carried out some research, including listening in depth to the views and perspectives of disabled people. We are publishing this work because we believe that the findings are important for a wide range of people and organisations who care about the same things that we do.

Here are some findings and testimonials from our 2020 research conducted with Britain Thinks and the National Centre for Social Research

Car and Train Illustration

*Source - Statistics from the National Centre for Social Research (NatCen) of the National Travel Survey (NTS) 2018.

“Reliability is very important when you're a disabled person. When things go wrong it can be more than a nuisance, it can be dangerous for some disabled people.”

“My journey begins from outside my doorstep, as it’s from there that I am leaving my safe environment to embark into the unknown.”

Here is our video entitled "Building a better understanding of the transport lives of disabled people. July 2020" that summarises some of our finding from our work with Britain Thinks and the National Centre for Social Research.

Our Research Moving Forward

This year, in dialogue with disabled people’s organisations, we identified the best new opportunities for Motability to improve mobility for disabled people in the future. These have resulted in two new priority areas for our research and innovation work moving forward:

Priority Area 1 – Working with other charities and across sectors to amplify the voices of disabled people in the transport system. This means exploring and addressing the issues faced by people living with disabilities in accessing transport, including through the energy transition. The lack of representation of disabled people’s views in key decision-making forums was a theme that cut across all of our research.

Priority Area 2 – Expanding access to community and door-to-door transport solutions for disabled people over the long term. This is particularly important because our research identified a large group of disabled people who don’t have access to a car, but who also face enormous challenges using public transport.

We are also establishing a new impact and evaluation function so that we can understand more clearly over time what makes the most difference to the mobility of disabled people, and ensure that we are using our resources effectively.

Here is the list of reports that are available on request by completing the form below:

  • Rapid Evidence Assessment (REA): Disability and transport needs, gaps and innovation (NatCen)
  • Secondary Analysis of the National Travel Survey (NTS) 2018 (NatCen)
  • User Research: Transport needs for disabled people (BritainThinks)
  • Research Summary: Building a better understanding of the transport lives of disabled people (Motability)
  • Electric vehicle charging infrastructure for people living with disabilities (Ricardo Energy and Environment).

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