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Informal Public Transportation Networks in Three Indonesian Cities

This report looks at informal public transportation (IPT) from different perspectives and reconsiders its value not just in improving urban mobility, but also as a provider of employment and backbone of the informal economy. In doing so, this report describes how IPT improves mobility in cities by complementing formal transportation systems – but the distinction between the two is often far from clear. Jogja, Solo, and Palembang are places crowed with people constantly jostling for space on the road, carting goods to market, ambling across traffic on the way to school, and swarming on motorcycles. All of this activity blurs together, but the available modes of transport are very different. Some are regulated and run by the government – formal transportation such as city buses. Others such as becaks and ojeks are independently run by their owners – informal transportation. To most people, however, the difference between formal and informal may be hard to distinguish because there is such a variety of vehicles decorated in innumerable ways.

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