Future of Mobility

a global challenge

Urban Transportation is rapidly changing. New market entrants are increasingly global from day one and consumer expectations for seamless, pain-free, user experiences are high.

Consumer markets have moved away from a desire to own cars to being in control of their digitalised lives: leading to a global demand for Mobility as a Service – a market valued at £1 trillion by 2030.

New flexible and sharing economy services, are blurring the lines between private and public transportation, creating a real need for integration across the whole transport spectrum.

Yet current infrastructure and data for travel booking, payment and information is locked away in silos. It means very little interoperability between modes of transport, across borders or between competing transport companies.

This market fragmentation creates numerous pain-points for the travelling public, and risks constraining and stifling the full market growth potential of the mobility sector.

With cities consuming between two-thirds and three-quarters of the world’s energy, their role in driving a clean energy future is inescapable. Around 1.5 million people are added to the global urban population every week, and the proportion of the world’s population living in urban areas is heading for 66 percent by 2050.

The global imperative for change is clear.

Uncontrolled, rapid urbanization presents acute challenges for national and local governments, with constrained capacity and finance for infrastructure delivery.

Unplanned and poorly managed urbanization can give rise to inequality, pollution, and costly sprawling development plans.

Too much of city development and planning is based on existing habits and behaviours, which oftentimes neither address the challenges, nor increase happiness.

the future of mobility

Around the world, new ways of providing mobility are appearing in our cities and towns each day. From autonomous vehicles to e-bikes, new technologies are bringing our science-fiction dreams to life.

At the same time, rapid adoption of mobile Internet access is creating new business models and service offerings that change the way we access existing modes.

In the UK, we can see the start of changing travel behaviour as car clubs have grown to 250,000 members across the UK in the last 10 years. Docking station bike-share schemes have reached 17 towns and cities, and IoT enabled bike-share schemes are now arriving from China and Singapore, that, have lower ground infrastructure requirements.

Since 2016 Mobility as a Service (MaaS) has emerged from within this exciting frontier to offer travellers a powerful new alternative to car ownership in the form of seamless multi-modal transport. It provides a range of mobility offers across modes and locations, all linked through an integrated user interface.

This is a real step forward. But MaaS also has the potential to upend existing business models and greatly disrupt local economies. Furthermore, in an “world of closed”, we foresee a future MaaS market that is fragmented, and struggles to reconcile the private automotive world with the world of public transit.

We are championing an open world, that demands a shift in corporate thinking, and in many cases, challenges the “status quo” within the transport sector. It asks businesses and public organisations to derive value and achieve results based on the use of open data and code and not by making it inaccessible to others.

The Foundation and the TravelSpirit Community believe we must ensure that the world of new mobility does not take substantial value and profits out of local communities. Instead it must add value and improve citizens’ wellbeing.

To do so, we need to challenge assumptions that the development of new mobility models will be proprietary, monopolistic, and closed to outsiders – whether they be from the public or private sector.