Consultancy releases the fourth edition of its Future of Mobility study in collaboration with UITP

Global management consultancy Arthur D. Little has released the fourth edition of its Future of Mobility study in collaboration with UITP.

The study, which engaged with over 70 executives from more than 30 organisations worldwide (transport authorities, mass transit operators, mobility solutions providers and professional bodies), aims to shed light on the impact COVID-19 will have on mobility patterns in the medium to long term.

It also provides strategic responses to enable mobility policy makers and solutions providers to leverage the disruption caused by the crisis and make step changes in the post-COVID-19 world.

“Changing the basic paradigm of mobility systems is hugely challenging, and up to now, most cities and countries have struggled to make the fundamental changes needed to move towards sustainable, resilient and human-centric urban mobility systems,” said François-Joseph Van Audenhove, partner at Arthur D. Little and head of the Future of Mobility Lab.

“Despite, or even because of, the economic stress that we will see over the coming years, now could be the time for stakeholders to act together to make it happen.”

The report provides a summary of more than 100 actions that transport authorities and mobility solutions providers are taking, or planning to take, in response to the pandemic.

It also identifies six ‘game changers’ that are critical for mobility system players to make the most of what is a unique window of opportunity to move forward and accelerate change.

For city and local governments these ‘game changers’ are:

  1. Think and act at system level by developing a unified long-term mobility vision, implement system-level regulation, adopt system-level execution planning, and revise the mobility-funding equation;
  2. Foster innovation through public-private collaborations on innovative technology and business model development. Collaborate on technology development and implementation, innovative business models, and promote innovation schemes, competitions and projects; and
  3. Set up a Unified Mobility Management Model, enabling real-time optimisation of mobility flows and assets at city or national level.

For operators to rebuild customer relevance and trust and improve operational resilience, the ‘game changers’ are:

  1. Build intimacy and proactively engage with clients by engaging with passengers, improving information through personalisation and proactively engaging with businessesees and schools to influence mobility
  2. Accelerate digitalisation of both offerings and operations while working towards the digitalisation of ticketing and payment and passenger information, the deployment of MaaS (B2C and B2B); and
  3. Evolution of established crisis management approaches to better anticipate risks and improve resilience of operations. The report suggests that operators should develop forward-looking risk management approaches based on artificial intelligence and machine learning methods, develop recovery scenario planning and business continuity plans, and set up crisis management and rapid-response schemes for increased agility and flexibility in planning and operation.

“Together, we must move beyond the management of short-term response and seize a historical and unique opportunity to start over and shape the future of our cities,” said Jérôme Pourbaix, senior director of global growth at UITP. “We don’t want to go from lockdown back to gridlock, therefore this is our chance to work together and bring back better mobility to people in our cities.”

The report can be downloaded here.

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