REDUCING OUR RELIANCE ON CARS: THE SHIFTING FUTURE OF URBAN TRANSPORTATION
(MIT Management - Sloan School) In 2005, 66 million cars were sold worldwide. By 2025, Goldman Sachs predicts that number to increase to 112 million.
The prevalence of cars has had unintended consequences, though. “Across the world we have high levels of local air pollution in cities, high levels of carbon pollution leading to greenhouse gas effects, and high levels of congestion,” saidCharles Fine, a professor at MIT Sloan and whose research focuses on supply chain strategy. “The continued growth of automobile usage is not sustainable.”
In “Faster, Smarter, Greener: The Future of the Car and Urban Mobility,” Fine and co-authors Venkat Sumantran, chairman of Celeris Technologies, and David Gonsalvez, CEO and rector at MIT’s Malaysia Institute for Supply Chain Innovation, outline an answer to the problematic dominance of cars in urban mobility. The convergence of new technologies and shifting culture offer a new way to think about transportation, centered on what the authors call the “CHIP architecture.”
What are the core issues addressed in this book?
We have numerous sustainability challenges in today’s automotive, or mobility, industries. Our book, which looks primarily at urban mobility, is about understanding these challenges and looking for paths to improvement. For many people, the current solution is to own a car. You keep that car in your garage or in a parking space. Whenever you need mobility, you get in your car, go where you need to go, and look for parking.
So how do we get people to use alternative modes — walking, biking, buses, trains, and subways? The answer is going to be driven by improving our mobility systems to encourage a significant fraction of people to get out of their cars. In order to do that, those alternative choices have to be made more attractive and useful using the CHIP architecture: increasing connectivity, heterogeneity, intelligence, and personalization.
People should have a range of transportation options, such as bus, trains, and bike shares.