French Expert Shares Keen Perspectives on Creating Smart Living Spaces and Transportation Systems

                                                   New ESRI Press Book Presents the Philosophies of Jean Poulit

Redlands, California - December 17, 2007 - Jean Poulit’s long, distinguished government career in France, mainly as a transportation and urban planner, gave him unique insights into where and how far people will travel for work, recreation, and shopping. In Connecting People While Preserving the Planet: Essays on Sustainable Development, a new ESRI Press book, Poulit presents his vision of building intelligent and healthy living spaces and transportation systems to protect the environment and spur economic growth.

Poulit’s methodologies and findings show how people’s travel behavior affects the economy, job opportunities, and the environment. While Poulit focuses on France and the European Union, his wealth of knowledge should prove illuminating to futurists, transportation officials, urban planners, government officials, and environmentalists worldwide.

Poulit writes that four in-depth transportation surveys conducted between 1976 and 2001 in France provided data about the number of trips people took daily and the distances they traveled by foot, on public transportation, and in motorized vehicles. The results showed that they’re reaching newer and more far-flung destinations to shop, seek better jobs, and enjoy nature because of improved transportation systems, even though they spend about the same amount of time in transit as they did more than 20 years ago. In turn, this generates more wealth for a country, he writes.

Though it runs counter to popular belief, even clogged freeways and packed commuter trains are very useful, generating nearly half a nation’s wealth by interconnecting people and facilitating exchanges of know-how between them, Poulit says. And, according to the author, access to natural spaces, such as parks, rivers, beaches, and mountains, is increasing constantly, creating greater well-being.

Poulit also discusses transportation’s negative effects on the environment and makes a case for improving mass transit, adding bullet trains, and combating the greenhouse effect by promoting vehicles that rely on hydrogen and fuel cells.

Poulit’s book was originally published in French in 2005 by Bourin Éditeur, Paris, under the title Le territoire des hommes: La création de richesse, d'emplois et de bien-être au sein d'une planète préservée (The Territory of Men: The Creation of Wealth, Jobs, and Prosperity in a World Preserved).

The inventor of Bison Futé (Smart Buffalo), a system that alerts travelers to avoid traffic jams during peak vacation travel, Poulit served in many important French government posts. He was director general of the Public Development Authority in charge of developing Marne-la-Vallée, a new town on the eastern side of Paris that includes Disneyland Paris. As head of the French Agency for Energy Saving, he initiated La Chasse au Gaspi (Chase Waste), a national energy conservation program.

Today he is vice president of international affairs for the Association Française de l’Information Géographique (AFIGEO). He also works as an independent consultant, focusing on urbanism, transport, and geographic information system (GIS) technology.

Connecting People While Preserving the Planet: Essays on Sustainable Development (ISBN 9781589481923, 230 pages, $29.95) is available at online retailers worldwide, at, or by calling 1-800-447-9778. Outside the United States, contact your local ESRI distributor. Visit for a current distributor list. Interested retailers can contact ESRI Press book distributor Ingram Publisher Services.

About ESRI Press

ESRI Press publishes books on GIS, cartography, and the application of spatial analysis to many areas of public and private endeavor including land-use planning, health care, education, business, government, and science. The complete selection of GIS titles from ESRI Press can be found on the Web at

About ESRI

Since 1969, ESRI has been giving customers around the world the power to think and plan geographically. The market leader in GIS, ESRI software is used in more than 300,000 organizations worldwide including each of the 200 largest cities in the United States, most national governments, more than two-thirds of Fortune 500 companies, and more than 7,000 colleges and universities. ESRI applications, running on more than one million desktops and thousands of Web and enterprise servers, provide the backbone for the world’s mapping and spatial analysis. ESRI is the only vendor that provides complete technical solutions for desktop, mobile, server, and Internet platforms. Visit us at

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