Monthly Archives: March 2015

Race 2050

RACE2050 foresight study aims to identify key success factors for a sustainable growth of the European Transport industry and for policies which can increase its strength in a long perspective up to 2050. By integrating the tremendous available foresight intelligence into a comparative synopsis, we will be able to compare and assess various visions and especially different policies to reach these goals. The results of this analysis will be discussed with experts from the transport industry, research, policy, and the foresight field. By this, we will come up with weighted explanations and long duree core concepts for a sustainable strength of the European transport industry.

By studying the actual impacts of past foresight studies we will learn how to present our own integrative foresight synopsis and what to expect from transport industry and policy. Important drivers of change will be extracted by analyzing current policies, emerging technologies, energy and environment aspects, demand forces, geopolitical trends and other relevant domains. General Morphological Analysis (GMA) will then be used to integrate and assess a multitude of driving forces for alternative scenarios. Wild Cards analysis will provide additional important input to the final outcomes: novel scenarios for 2030 and 2050 on the competitiveness of the European transport industry. The scenario construction will be supported by a web-based interactive foresight synopsis tool, envisioned to create a long-term legacy for stakeholders, lasting beyond the duration of the project.

Race 2050.

Carlos Ghosn est désabusé face à la voiture électrique


“En Suisse, les voitures purement électriques sont peu nombreuses. En comptant les véhicules hybrides, la part de marché représente 3,6%, alors que les voitures 4×4 se taillent la part du lion avec 42,4%. Plusieurs constructeurs mettent sur le marché des voitures munies de piles à combustible qui fonctionnent à l’hydrogène. Toyota présente ainsi sa berline Mirai en première européenne au Salon de l’auto de Genève.Le patron de Renault-Nissan n’est pas pressé de suivre le mouvement. «Nous disposons déjà de prototypes de la deuxième génération, mais nous ne voyons aucune urgence à nous lancer sur ce marché», explique-t-il. Les expériences faites avec la voiture entièrement électrique ont rendu Carlos Ghosn prudent. «Les constructeurs qui se lancent maintenant auront le même problème que nous, à savoir l’absence d’infrastructure de recharge. Il sera même plus aigu car une station délivrant de l’hydrogène coûte plusieurs centaines de milliers de dollars.” Willy Boder – Le Temps

Lire davantage: Carlos Ghosn est désabusé face à la voiture électrique –

Reviewing the Factors Contributing to Car Traffic in Britain.


In the last 10 to 15 years the rate of car traffic growth has been declining in Britain and it is not clear why. Understanding factors behind this trend can help policymakers plan for future infrastructure needs.


The aim of this rapid evidence assessment was to gain a better understanding of the recent levelling off in total miles driven in Britain by reviewing evidence on the possible contributory factors.

The primary aim of the review was to identify and present findings covering the extent to which technological, social, economic, demographic, political, geographical and environmental changes have affected car usage and ownership. Evidence is presented on key factors influencing driving within these areas, and about how they affect different demographic groups, when available.

The secondary aim, where evidence exists, was to explore further why a particular factor is important; for example, if an identified factor is that young adults are delaying licence acquisition and car ownership relative to young adults a decade ago, to explore what the reasons are behind this.


The study undertakes a rapid evidence assessment review of peer-reviewed papers and ‘grey’ literature to provide a better understanding of the recent levelling off in total miles driven in Britain. The review focused on studies that used evidence for the UK or Britain, or international studies that used evidence from the UK or Britain alongside evidence from other countries.

As the levelling off in car traffic is considered a relatively recent phenomenon, the search was restricted to material from 1995 onwards. The search was also restricted to passenger demand studies and to studies that were concerned with travel by car.

Key Findings

We found that the literature reviewed for this study provided a good description of key trends influencing car mileage since the nineties, including:

  • changes in traditional economic factors, including fuel price increases, changes in vehicle use costs and income growth, that would be expected to influence car mileage levels;
  • reductions in driving levels for young people;
  • population increases in urban areas, where car ownership and car use levels are lower on a per capita basis (although the impact of growing population in conurbations and cities on overall per capita car mileage levels appears to be relatively small);
  • increases in (per capita) car travel levels for women, although women are still observed to drive less than men;
  • increases in (per capita) car travel levels for the elderly, although the elderly drive less than other population groups;
  • increased immigration levels (with migrants being observed to use their cars less than those born in Britain, even after taking into account the tendency of migrants to live in urban areas); and
  • reductions in company car ownership, and associated reductions in car mileage, particularly for men.

However, what is less clear is the contribution of each of these trends to overall car mileage levels, and what are the key drivers impacting these trends.

We found little information on how the following trends impact car travel: (i) employment levels or type; (ii) use of internet technology; (iii) substitutes, in terms of mode shifts or switching to new destinations; (iv) network supply effects, such as congestion; and (v) attitudinal changes.

We also found suggestions that car ownership and usage may be approaching saturation – that is to say, car ownership levels (per household) and the use of those cars have stabilised at some maximum level. However, the evidence for saturation of car usage relies on analysis of aggregate car trends, which do not adequately account for the significant changes in car travel patterns for different segments of the population.


Paper Series: Re-imagining Urban Mobility.


On March 6, 2014, we organized Cities on the Move, a one-day event exploring the multifaceted nature of urban mobility and its impact on our cities. We invited the most forward thinking researchers and practitioners from economics, sociology, architecture and design, policy, finance and technology to discuss the changing nature of urban mobility. Cities on the Move was hosted by Google in Mountain View, California.

To complement Cities on the Move, we invited participants and other thought leaders to contribute short papers on the mobility needs facing cities globally.

Find out more