1. Introduction

Presently, one billion people worldwide lack easy access to an all-season road and thus live in isolation, which is a major contributor to the poverty and marginalization of rural populations.  While 58% of developing country populations live in rural areas, 78% of the extreme poor are located in rural areas. In "Rural Poverty Unperceived," Robert Chambers linked rural indigence firmly to isolation. "If a rural area cannot be easily reached, if people living in the rural area cannot easily travel, if the flow of goods and services in and out of that area is physically difficult, unreliable or expensive...these are the characteristics of isolation."   

The Partnership on Sustainable, Low Carbon Transport (SLoCaT) has actively contributed to the discussion on the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and associated indicators. To encourage discussion on the contribution of rural transport to the SDGs, the SLoCaT Partnership is conducting a survey on possible indicators for rural transport infrastructure and services for potential inclusion in support of the UN Sustainable Development Goals.  

The purposes of this quick survey are:
- To gather views and opinions on existing indicators for rural transport and how these could be integrated in the monitoring framework for transport related SDGs;
- To present potential indicators and inquire about acceptance and feasibility of a quantification in practice;
- To collect additional indicators suggested by the survey respondents; and
- To identify possible stakeholders for the further development of indicators.

The survey responses will be used to stimulate a debate about possible indicators for rural transport to be included in, or complement, the SDGs framework.

The SLoCaT Partnership is conducting the survey in the framework of its collaboration with the UK Aid-funded Research for Community Access Partnership (ReCAP). ReCAP promotes safe and sustainable transport for rural communities in Africa and Asia by supporting rural road infrastructure and transport services research. One of SLoCaT’s primary goals in the collaboration is to document ongoing efforts on rural transport indicator development, and propose and analyse draft indicators for advancement under possible future Sustainable Transport status reports.

We appreciate your participation in this survey and would welcome your on-going engagement on this topic. The survey is anonymous and will take about 10 minutes to complete.