During the Virtual ITS European Congress held on 9-10 November, the TM 2.0 ERTICO Innovation Platform hosted the session “Mobility out of the Box – Why do we move?”. It is the third year that ‘Mobility out of the Box” is being held during the ITS European Congress and the discussion raised a lot of interest within the Congress as it also did in on social media.
The session investigated the reasons why people move and, after the inspiring pitches of our nine speakers, we launched a survey to know more about people’s different points of view.
The results of the survey show a general consensus (71.5%) on the fact that human beings move because it is a primordial instinct, needed both to survive and for our wellbeing, including the emotional nature of moving (95.2%). In fact, 62.5% of the comments linked the need to move to emotions of freedom, sense of belonging and mental health balance.
If we take a look at the effects that the COVID-19 pandemic has had on mobility instead, there is still some scepticism (23.8%) about rush hour disappearing in the future thanks to increasing homeworking. The reasons vary from the small portion of people that will be able to work from home on a regular basis, to the need of productive activities to be carried out during the day (school, delivery services, blue collar jobs).
So, what do we consider important in mobility? The 95.2% of the people who answered the survey agree/strongly agree with the statement “We want to be able to choose the time we spend traveling and reliably know when we are where”, highlighting how important it is the sense of control we have on the outcome of mobility. This is especially true when it comes to an integrated mobility ecosystem for urban spaces that also encompasses nudging people’s behaviour towards the wiser decisions about urban mobility options. According to some comments (14.2%) these integrated, more reliable solutions, though, appear to be less likely to be adopted in more rural areas where mobility services are not well spread enough and private car are still the preferred choice for many.
Life style will drive a bigger need for green mobility, provided that a continuous political and financial support will be provided to users so that enough choices from an existing set of affordable green mobility options range is guaranteed.
And whilst 50% of the interviewed people agree/strongly agree with the 15-minutes city concept, many issues are raised, linked to the great effort that would be required to reach the goal and the few resources available to cities to materialise that, including the lack of interest among the public for such a solution.
The details of the survey results are reported in this document, with an overview on the statements of the speakers and a selection of the most relevant comments. This discussion – started with the Virtual ITS European Congress session and continued with the survey enquiry – is a very helpful one for all those working in mobility, as they should always keep the focus clear for what the aim is: working towards a better, safer and more efficient mobility. To achieve that, a deep understanding of the human need to move, including its constrictions, contingencies and desires, is paramount to provide the best possible solutions. Knowing the ‘why’ will certainly guide us to the ‘how’.
During the session “Mobility out of the Box – Why do we move?” held at the Virtual ITS European Congress on the 9th and 10th of November, we asked 9 speakers, in their 4-minute pitch, to provide a statement on their vision.
We then asked the audience to provide us with their feedback on those statements, including their own answer to the question “Why do we move”. The results of the survey are detailed below.