JITI 2014 Intersections Series
Mobility Innovation in the Sharing Economy
February 5, 2014
The Brookings Institution, Saul/Zilkha room
1775 Massachusetts Avenue N.W., Washington, D.C.
The potential changes from increased use of transportation services in the sharing economy include greater mobility for all, potential for change in urban lifestyles, and more efficient use of infrastructure. The development of mobile apps for ridesharing and carsharing has have led to a number of innovations in the availability of real-time transit and driving data, elevating awareness of mobility options, and the provision of transportation choices for individuals with access to fairly ubiquitous smartphone technology. These technologies enable those with such means to hail taxis, borrow cars, and better plan for transit or travel.
A common undercurrent in the rise of these firms is a shift toward the needs of those who have demonstrated preferences toward urban lifestyles that are less dependent on cars, especially Millennials and Baby Boomers. Meeting this demand are firms that make it easier to navigate their communities and to avoid the capital-intensive costs of personal vehicle ownership. This change in ownership and reliance on vehicle-sharing or services approximating traditional taxi service could open up opportunities for more efficient use of current infrastructure, congestion mitigation, and air quality benefits.
Although innovations in mobility could increase efficiency and convenience in the transportation sector, universal access and equity remain critical. Likewise, the safety of drivers, passengers, and the public at large will continue to figure prominently. This event will provide an opportunity to examine the strengths, weaknesses, and opportunities presented by recent innovations in mobility.
The JITI Intersections Series provides a platform for transportation experts across modes and industries to interact with fellow practitioners and policymakers. As a supplement to JITI’s signature seminars, this series will facilitate further opportunities for open dialogue and exchange of ideas to improve transportation outcomes.
Senior Research Associate and Associate Fellow, Brookings Metropolitan Policy Program
Director, Mobility Lab