Category Archives: Other

MIND-SETS at Mobility4EU

The MIND-SETS project was recently presented at a Mobility4EU workshop by one of the consortium’s partners, Laurent Franckx of VITO. Within a wider discussion of shared, automated and electric mobility, he spoke about the project, what it hopes to achieve, and what it has accomplished so far. Later in the day, he participated in a session that was aimed at testing Mobility4EU’s Multi Actor Multicriteria Analysis tool (MAMCA). In the workshop, he was asked to evaluate how different developments could contribute to the realisation of each of four possible future scenarios, seen from the perspective of various stakeholder groups.

For more information, see the Fourth Mobility4EU Workshop on Criteria Weighting or contact Laurent Franckx of VITO.

Go back to the newsletter

Upcoming activities: Webinars, workshops, guidelines, and the MSKC

Knowledge centre

Photo: Taco Ekkel

A number of initiatives are being planned over the next few months to better exploit the project’s knowledge. There will be a series of webinars, on the approach and its implications for professionals, on the upcoming guidelines, and on the generational perspective. Then, with the release of the guidelines and the MIND-SETS Knowledge Centre, a workshop will be held in the first part of 2017 so that target groups can test and validate the Knowledge Centre and offer their feedback on the guidelines. To present the results of the project, the final conference will be held in conjunction with Mobility4EU in May 2017.

For more information, contact Lucia Cristea of EIP.

Go back to the newsletter

Emerging trends in transport: The MIND-SETS bulletins

MIND-SETS bulletins - post-mobility

MIND-SETS bulletins - post-mobilityWetopia, Flatage Mobility, Post-Mobility – what are the emerging trends that will characterise the future of mobility? That is what MIND-SETS seeks to answer with a series of soon-to-be released articles that talk about key concepts in today’s new mobility. These are not limited to types of products and services, such as automated vehicles or ride sourcing, but include shifts in how mobility and spaces are conceived. For example, Wetopia refers to the collaborative attitude of millennials and how this will affect the uptake of various mobility-related products and services. Flatage Mobility presents the idea that once people reach sixty years old, they “age out” of aging, remaining sixty, active, but with more disposable income. Understanding the nuances of this self-image is key for those who design and market products and services for them. Post-Mobility highlights a number of innovative, mobility-related experiments across Europe. These initiatives feature unexpected combinations of services, such as psychotherapy and taxi rides, and in doing so, turn the old idea of simply getting from point A to B on its head. The bulletins are designed not just to inform policy makers and transport product and service providers, but to inspire them.

For more information, contact Stefaan Vandist of Pocket Marketing.

Go back to the newsletter

The MIND-SETS workshop on mobility in the 21st century: A road to nowhere, a highway to hell or a stairway to heaven?

MIND-SETS workshop

The MIND-SETS restricted workshop was held on September 19, 2016, at the European Commission in Brussels, Belgium. The workshop, which gathered invited key European stakeholders in transport and mobility and representatives from the EC, aimed at presenting the MIND-SETS approach in understanding the changing role of mobility in people’s lives.

We keep hearing about the new 21st century mobilityautomated mobility, virtual mobility, mobility as a service, fully connected mobility. But are these trends really a way forward for social development and growth? Do they really signify a new, more inclusive mobility for Europe? Mobility thinking today is dominated by the potential of new technologies, the attitudes of the digital generations, and optimistic predictions for the ‘future’. But what about the other demographic end, that is, our ageing society? In all of the excitement surrounding the new mobility, there remain concerns regarding the mobility impaired and the issue of mobility deprivation.

In the views of some experts, we may be getting a bit ahead of ourselves in our enthusiasm for the new mobility. They see shared mobility as already close to maximum market penetration. For them, mobility 30 years from now will not look very different than it does now – it will be a mobility dominated by private cars controlled by humans: a road to nowhere. Other experts are circumspect as well, pointing out that shared mobility could reach a much higher level in the next 30 years, creating a disaster for public transport use. Shared automated vehicles could also negatively impact the environment by increasing congestion and urban sprawl: a highway to hell. Yet there is a more hopeful scenario that many experts ascribe to, where shared and automated mobility has a positive impact, accidents are reduced, cities have more parking available, and the control of traffic leads to increased energy efficiency: the mobility stairway to heaven.

Each of these three visions is possible, and public policy will play a key role in determining which one we end up with.

The workshop opened with a brief description of the project, its objectives and its results so far. The MIND-SETS approach was presented, giving an overview of some of the new ways we are starting to look at mobility decision making. Then, an analysis was offered of how the different generations think – along with their likelihood of adopting new mobility innovations. Travel planning practices – and how these are set to change in the future – were then described in detail. Afterwards, the key themes which are at the core of MIND-SETS were discussed: mobility automation, smart and virtual mobility, sustainable and inclusive mobility and seamless mobility.

The presentations were followed by an animated question and answer session that continued to look at generational mind-sets, but which also touched upon segmentation and how it can help bring about behavioural change.

See the workshop’s agenda and presentations and continue the discussion online at our LinkedIn group.

For more information, contact Silvia Gaggi of ISINNOVA.

Go back to the newsletter

Future mobility trends: Car sharing and automated mobility

automatic car

MIND-SETS has looked at three major trends on the supply side of mobility that could be game changers: the rise of the shared economy, technologies for automated mobility, and improvements in electric mobility. These developments could lead to profound changes in our mobility systems. At the same time, however, they may pose certain challenges for transport planning and policy.

Implications for transport modelling research and planning

automatic car

Photo: Automobile Italia

Transport models simulating the impacts of shared mobility and/or of AVs concur on the essential qualitative impacts: a widespread use of AV will lead to important decreases in the number of vehicles (and a corresponding decrease in the need for parking space) coupled with an increase in vehicle miles travelled, unless it goes hand in hand with an uptake of ridesharing and an important modal share of high capacity transit systems. There are, however, important gaps in current transport modelling. First, given that shared mobility is still a niche, it is not clear to what extent the behavioural changes observed in this niche (for instance, reduced car use) are representative for the whole population. Second, the greater comfort provided by AVs will reduce the Value of Time spent in traffic, most likely leading to longer distances travelled and to more urban sprawl. Third, AVs could lead to an increased demand for private travel as the need for parking (an important fixed cost) would disappear, though a more detailed modelling of parking options is needed. The reduced need for parking space could also change the urban landscape. Policy will be key in determining how this space is used: this could range from measures to help adapt cities to climate change to new housing and additional transport capacity.

With regard to pricing, studies up to now have focused on a limited number of key decision makers. However, several stakeholders are likely to change their price settings as a response to AVs: public transport operators, managers of parking facilities, electric network operators and, in the long distance segment, air and rail.

Current models, however, use data representing the current situation, and are ill-equipped to model departures from the status quo. In more general terms, there is an increasing need to understand the fundamental mobility motives of people. Travel surveys that limit themselves to past and current behaviour will become increasingly useless.

Implications for transportation demand management

Changes in transport technology and innovative business model do not emerge in a policy vacuum: we need to understand what type of policies will promote specific solutions. On the other hand, these new technologies and business models also raise new policy issues. For one, shared mobility, in its various forms, can be both a complement and a substitute to transit modes. Where it is a complement, this is because it can be an effective tool to bridge the last and the first mile in a transport chain. For low income households, solving the “last mile” problem can mean a significant change in their access to the labour market. However, if shared mobility turns out to be mainly a substitute for public transit, the move to an increasing use of shared solutions could create a new vicious circle of decreased transit patronage and decreased service levels.

Arguably, the most important question in transport policy in the next few years will be whether policies can be designed that harness the strengths of shared mobility solutions to solve the “first/last” mile problem, and thus to promote alternatives to unimodal car mobility. MaaS, integrated ticketing and real-time multi-modal travel information fit into this. Public authorities can also reinforce the complementarity by providing the necessary infrastructure of bike-, ride- and car sharing near important public transport hubs.

With regard to on-demand ride services, some of the controversial elements, such as insurance coverage and driver screening, can be solved through regulation. On-demand services are also having an influence on traditional taxi markets, which are adopting some of their innovations. The issue of data sharing is also important, and there are already concrete examples of public-private cooperation that can lead to mutually beneficial exchanges between the transport authorities and the providers of on-demand services.

Electric vehicles are more likely to be a competitive alternative to vehicles with internal combustion engines (ICE) in a shared fleet, as they have a higher acquisition cost but lower operating cost. Public policies such as differentiated road pricing or higher fuel taxation, as well as planning and zoning rules, could promote the uptake of electric mobility. Electric bicycles could become attractive substitutes for “classical” bicycles, especially in cities where the relief and high temperatures make cycling unattractive.

A correct pricing of all transport modes according to their social costs will ensure that society will be able to capture the benefits of these innovations, while avoiding the possible disadvantages.

DRT (demand responsive transport) systems can be used to improve the accessibility of the elderly, the mobility impaired, and those who live in areas with very low population densities. Modern communication technologies could improve the efficiency of DRT or other alternative transit systems by making it easier to share rides from the same origin or to the same destination. These types of shared mobility hold the promise of improving accessibility to jobs, healthcare and schools.

For more information, see the full deliverable or contact Laurent Franckx of VITO.

Go back to the newsletter