Type: Review
Pages: 4 | Words: 909
Reading Time: 4 Minutes

Reaching for this book, Air Transportation – A Management Perspective, 6th edition  by John Wensveen, the November 6, 2007 Ashgate publication, Virginia,  I had expectations of a comprehensive text  about air transportation in relation to Federal Aviation Act of 1958. This was in regard to his views on the concerns of the airline industry and the federal Aviation Act of 1958. After I have read it, I found satisfaction of my expectations. It is a source of information that explains the general understanding of air transportation in regard of the Federal Aviation Act of 1958.

However, I am careful enough to call it a bit sophisticated and complex guide for analyzing the air transportation as it is stipulated in the Federal Aviation Act of 1958.  The book presents how the act was enacted and the reasons for the enactment.

In 1958, President Eisenhower, citing midair collisions of aircraft that had caused a number of fatalities, asked Congress for legislation to establish an air traffic system management to overlook the accident recurrences for the safety of the passengers. Congress responded by enacting the Federal Aviation Act of 1958, which was signed into law on August 23, 1958. (Wensveen, 2007)

Taking a close look on the book content, one can found that it consists of four parts covering aspects of air transportation.  The book outline includes not only the introductory and international parts, but also the economic and managerial parts. The theme of the book is well understood in the course of reading as Wensveen drives his views on the air transportation, bearing in mind the regulations of the Federal aviation Act.

The book covers the reasons behind changes in the air transport and attempts to forecast the futuristic certainty of the activity in the economy across the world. At the end of the book, Wensveen outlines appendices on views of industry professionals, and career planning in aviation. He also includes a glossary of terms and indices. The Congress Federation gave the Federal Aviation Act the authority over the airspace. The FAA was mandated to overlook the safety and regulatory functions, and was empowered to regulate the navigable airspace use, develop traffic rules, carry out research and develop navigation facilities. As a result, the Act exempts a developed set of traffic rules for military aircrafts.

Part two of the book covers the economic aspect of the air transport industry. It is discussed in two broad titles: the Airline Industry and the Economic Characteristics of Airline Industry.  In this part, author defines industry as a group of firms producing similar goods and services. The fact that all of the firms produce similar goods and services makes them highly competitive.  Therefore, the existence of many air transport firms forms airline industry where several hundred companies engage in the business of carrying people or goods by air.

Part three discusses the managerial aspects of airlines covering airline financing, airline labor relations, fleet planning, airline management and organization, forecasting methods, airline passenger management, airline pricing, demand and output determination, and air cargo. The last part is a part four that presents international aviation issue to the reader. Under this part, he discussed the international matters that relate the Federal Aviation Act of 1958.

“As the airplane developed during the first decade of the 20th century, the sovereignty of airspace above nations became an issue. Should airspace above a nation be considered within the sovereignty of each nation, or should airspace, like the high seas, be considered international? “(Wensveen 2007 pp 460).

Still in section four, he discusses the sovereignty of nations and their airspace, as well as the height of the airspace for the nations and its limitation. This part elaborates different theories with different opinions over the airspace. Some international jurists argue that the airspace is free and that no individual country can hold authority over airspace. On the other hand, other theories state that individual countries have authority over the airspace above their soil.

My study of the topics that Wensveen outlines brings me satisfaction, as I feel that I discovered everything I needed to know about air transportation. The methodology used splits down air transport aspects in parts and, thus, covering the whole topic. The recognition of functions of the Federal Aviation Act in the book satisfactorily elaborates the air transportation fact. He mentions the FAA having functions of aircraft control, aircraft and aviator certification, airport aid, environmental protection, civil aviation security programs regulation, and undertake engineering and development in the sector.

The elaboration in the book is based on good procedures that enable the reader to understand and conceptualize the statements about air transport. I award him a credit for the approach of issues at hand for filling the gap in the research over air transport. His remarks over the book in the preface section recognize the edition as introductory that can provide the reader with a foundation on air transportation industry. Wensveen appreciates the major role of the Federal Aviation Act in the air transport Industry. He also outlines various references for each chapter, so that readers can explore and be updated on various issues. He concludes with a mention of challenges facing the air transport industry. It is of factual truths that competition stands as one of the airport industry challenge. Competition among foreign nations is growing, and stakeholders must take a note of engulf any pitfall that may face the industry in the future. He outlines liberalization as one of the greatest idea into the tackle of competition. 

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