The politics of flying: Aeromobile frictions in a mobile city

Weiqiang Lin

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This article joins recent calls for greater attention to be paid to the politics of mobility. In particular, it examines how air transport is not only experienced inequitably among different social groups, but is also an activity whose access and opportunities are geographically distributed in uneven ways. Using Singapore as a candidate and foil to reflect on this issue, this paper interrogates how three ‘international’ legislative frameworks—air traffic rights, air navigation rules, and climate change initiatives—have variously limited the city-state’s potential to ‘move’ at different stages of its flying career. Despite the city-state’s widely-acclaimed aviation success, this paper demonstrates how it remains subject to the geopolitical actions of more dominant players, residing interstitially between being at the vanguard, and at the peripheries of global air traffic. It is suggested that further interrogations on how particular transport practices and configurations become salient in the world are needed.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)92-99
JournalJournal of Transport Geography
Early online date22 Jun 2014
Publication statusPublished - 2014


  • air transport
  • aeromobilities
  • geopolitics
  • airspace
  • air navigation
  • climate change
  • non-West

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