Biography

University roles and responsibilities

  • Research Seminar Series Co-ordinator
  • Academic Integrity Officer & OSCAR Panel Member

    My qualifications

    BSc
    University of Macedonia, Greece
    MSc
    University of Oxford, UK
    PhD
    University of Leeds, UK

    Affiliations and memberships

    FeRSA
    Fellow of the Regional Studies Association

    Research

    Research interests

    Research projects

    Supervision

    Postgraduate research supervision

    My teaching

    My publications

    Publications

    Thomopoulos, N., Attard, M. (2022) Autonomous Vehicles. In Buhalis, D. (Ed.) Encyclopedia of Tourism Management and Marketing, Cheltenham: Edward Elgar.
    The Encyclopedia of Tourism Management and Marketing is, quite simply, the definitive reference work in the field. Carefully curated by leading tourism scholar Dimitris Buhalis, this is the largest tourism management and marketing ontology that has ever been put together and offers a holistic examination of this interdisciplinary field.
    Nikitas, A., Thomopoulos, N., Milakis, D. (2021) The Environmental and Resource Dimensions of Automated Transport: A Nexus for Enabling Vehicle Automation to Support Sustainable Urban Mobility, Annual Review of Environment and Resources, 46, pp.167-192.
    Automation carries paradigm-shifting potential for urban transport and has critical sustainability dimensions for the future of our cities. This paper examines the diverse environmental and energy-related dimensions of automated mobility in the city level by reviewing an emerging and increasingly diversified volume of literature for road, rail, water and air passenger transport. The multimodal nature of this investigation provides the opportunity for a novel contribution that adds value to the literature in four distinctive ways. It reviews from a sustainability angle the state of the art underpinning the transition to a paradigm of automated mobility, identifies current knowledge gaps highlighting the scarcity of non-technical research outside the autonomous car’s realm, articulates future directions for research and policy development and proposes a conceptual model that contextualises the nexus of automation-connectivity-electrification-sharing-multimodality as the only way forward for vehicle automation to reach its pro-environmental and resource-saving potential.
    Saud, V., Thomopoulos, N. (2021) Towards inclusive transport landscapes: Re-visualising a Bicycle Sharing Scheme in Santiago Metropolitan Region, Journal of Transport Geography, 92, pp.1-16. DOI: 10.1016/j.trangeo.2021.103004
    Bicycle Sharing Schemes (BSS) are re-emerging as promising components of urban mobility solutions worldwide. However, the lack of consistent collaboration strategies between different actors and institutions, which have been tested in a wide range of cities and contexts regarding their design, tender, operation and expansion, raises significant social and governance implications. Urban transport features as a melting pot for diverse policy objectives, ranging from business model innovation, public tendering, and accessibility increase to the equity and social justice agenda. By employing a Multi-Level Perspective (MLP) framework and by introducing alluvial diagrams and circular dendrograms to BSS planning through a mixed-methods approach, this article illustrates an innovative tool in managing BSS in the context of the Global South. The strength of such diagrams has been underestimated to date since they can be particularly useful for public and private urban transport planners and policy-makers. Visualising user flows in such a manner, particularly in near-live time, may offer valuable insight on the operational challenges of BSS. Findings of the cross-sectional survey in Santiago de Chile confirm that maintenance is significant for user satisfaction levels. Furthermore, decisions regarding BSS expansion and modification could be based on such analysis and diagrams due to the precise identification of both the busiest and those under-represented BSS stations based on revealed preferences.
    Thomopoulos, N., Cohen, S., Hopkins, D., Siegel, L., Kimber, S. (1972) All work and no play? Autonomous Vehicles and non-commuting journeys, Transport Reviews, pp.1-23. DOI: 10.1080/01441647.2020.1857460
    Non-commuting journeys, which include social and recreational journeys, make up a substantial proportion of household travel and these journeys are largely taken by car. Autonomous vehicle (AV) deployment has the potential to dramatically transform the way people work and travel, as well as reshape leisure travel patterns. Yet, the wider societal implications of AVs beyond commuting, such as travel for leisure and tourism, have received minimal attention within transport literature. This state-of-the-art review follows PRISMA guidelines and begins to address this gap through a synthesis of 63 papers on AV travel focusing on non-commuting journeys, including those for leisure, tourism, shopping and visiting friends and relatives. Given the economic importance of the tourism sector and its inherent focus on non-commuting journeys, this analysis is supplemented with a review of the extent to which national tourism strategies of countries leading AV deployment include reference to AVs. The paper reveals an overwhelming focus on commuting journeys in existing AV studies as less than one-fifth of the reviewed academic sources include non-commuting as part of their wider analysis. The review's further key findings are that the interest of publics in AVs for leisure journeys appears to exceed that for commuting, sharing vehicles will be less likely when AVs are used for leisure and there is a lack of recognition in the literature that some non-commuting journeys will require a lower SAE level of automation. Surprisingly, analysis of the national tourism strategies of countries most prepared to meet the challenges of AVs shows that just three countries make specific reference to AVs within their national tourism strategies. The paper contributes to setting future AV policy agendas by concluding that two gaps must be narrowed: one, the distance between how academic studies predominantly conceive of AV use (commuting) and articulated public interest in AVs for non-commuting journeys; and two, the lack of readiness in certain national tourism strategies to accommodate AVs. As non-commuting journeys will be some of the earliest ways for which AVs will be adopted, the paper sets an agenda with a number of recommendations to aid in this transition.