Digitalisation is shaping transport and mobility in a way never seen before. Sharing economy is playing a growing role also in the transport sector. Voices are getting louder demanding that users be put at the core of the transport systems. Consumer expectations and behaviour are changing, and consumers of mobility services became data producers as well.
Nearly all of the theoretical elements seem to be in their place. What is missing is how we can move from theory to reality, from development to deployment. At the same time, research results need to be utilised so that we can rethink who should be shaping the emerging mobility market. Do we know what kind of answers we should give to the calls of users? Who is sitting in the drivers’ seat on this transition journey?
Platform economy and disruptive business models are emerging and offering user-centric innovative mobility solutions. Regarding them, we need to have the basic building blocks in their right place, such as trust towards new technologies and making sure that cybersecurity and protection of personal data have been taken into account.
New business models demand certain skill sets from users so that they can use them. How can we make sure that we are developing future services in a way that is participatory and inclusive? We need to create and activate processes that allow the engagement of different users, including those with special needs.
At the same time societal change and rapid urbanisation with growing traffic volumes create a new kind of framework, which means we must find new ways of collaboration in order to head towards green, inclusive and smart cities.
Alongside the mobility needs of passengers, new ways of operating have been developed in logistics. Smart logistic chains contribute to economic efficiency, decreasing emissions, optimising delivery times, and improving consumers’ access to goods and services.
This plenary will also address safety challenge, such as the human element, across modes but also shed light on mode-specific challenges. What’s more, we need to pay attention to automation as part of logistical chains. How do we manage new risks stemming from automation? How can we, with support from the research sector, recognise the issues that play a key role during the transition phase?