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Driving the future of sharing-based transportation

Urban planners, researchers, policy makers, bike and car sharing organizations, technologists, and ridesharing companies met in San Francisco on October 10 and 11 to foster the development of shared-use mobility services. Organized by Dr. Susan Shaheen of UC Berkeley’s Transportation Sustainability Research Center (TSRC), the Shared-Use Mobility Summit featured lively, in-depth discussions on how the industry can increase the availability, cost-effectiveness, and sustainability of mobility for people around the world through car sharing, public bike sharing, ridesharing, and related services within the sharing economy.

Critical juncsustaniablture for the industry

The themes that emerged over the two-day meeting revolved around barriers to scaling shared-mobility. Cities are beginning to increase their investments in alternative transportation (San Francisco has made notable progress), and those who attended the meeting agree that the industry has reached an important juncture. While shared mobility makes up only a small fraction of local trips compared to cars and public transit, the technology and business models are now firmly in place—and sharing services are ready to scale.

One key barrier for these services remains, and that is policy. Even so, additional research on the impacts of shared-use mobility will likely influence cities to change outdated zoning laws and other costly practices that encourage personal car ownership because, in most cases, the rese
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