This month we are celebrating the theme of MOVE-mber, all about moving. Moving from one place to another, moving from the old ways of doing things into the new.
In this episode of the Smart Community Podcast I have a really great chat with Scott Shepard, the Chief Commercial Officer with mobility aggregator and service provider, Free2Move. Scott tells us about his background in urban planning and data analytics and how that led to his focus on transportation and new mobility in cities. We discuss why empowering citizens and improving community quality of life is really the whole point of the Smart Communities movement, and the real need for regional inclusiveness when it comes to tech, mobility and planning.
Scott and I discuss the ways new technologies pose a risk for increasing divide and disadvantage within our communities, and also the importance of looking past the hype in order to see those deeper problems and the real implications of the new tech on the most vulnerable in our communities. Scott then tells us about Free2Move, and having lived in both places, he shares with us his perspective on the similarities and differences between the way the US and Europe is embracing Smart Mobility concepts, and the different ways the markets are maturing.
We finish our chat discussing the emerging trend of consumer scrutiny and awareness around data, choices and inclusivity. As always, we hope you enjoyed listening to this episode as much as we enjoyed making it.
What we cover in this episode:
- Scott’s background in urban planning, mapping and data analytics and his passion for new mobility in cities
- What sparked his interest in the Smart Mobility space
- The reason we need to be building solutions for real problems (rather than letting new tech be a solution looking for a problem)
- The importance of Smart Community concepts for not only transportation and mobility, but also empowered citizens and improved quality of life
- Why empowering citifies and improving community quality of life is really the whole point of the Smart Communities movement
- The need for regional inclusiveness when it comes to tech, mobility and planning
- The importance of looking past the hype of new tech like micromobility options to see the real implications
- What Free2Move is and does
- The similarities and differences between the way the US and Europe are embracing Smart Mobility Concepts, and the ways the markets are maturing
- How integration can take many different forms, including policy, governance, data and stakeholder management
- The emerging trend of consumer scrutiny and awareness around data, choices and inclusivity
“[We should be] identifying specific use cases and applying those to real problem sets to solve urban challenges, versus the opposite, which is maybe a solution looking for a problem. I tend to bristle at that. We need to solve real problems that are inherent in our communities now and try to build solutions around those.”
“There is the risk of increasing the digital and mobility divide. Back to the micro-mobility use case, there has been a great concern that the access to shared bikes, shared scooters and other mobility options are heavily concentrated in a districts that are touristic, that are higher income and that basically are already saturated with mobility options.”
“Integration can take many different forms: it can take the forms of policy, it can take the forms of governance, it can take the form of data and it could take the form of stakeholder management. So, integration is a multifaceted concept that when thought of under the construct of smart communities, has to be executed in a fashion that hits all those different aspects.”
“The emerging trends are actually [that] we’re going through a bit of post-hype cycle, the market is maturing. Citizens are becoming better informed, better at scrutinizing the alternatives and asking more direct questions in terms of how [Smart City solutions are] going to benefit their communities.”
“We’re seeing a push and pull between the public and private sector, and the commoditization of consumers and their data is one of the key flash points right now, that is one of the trends that’s emerging from this disruption in smart communities, as well as shared mobility.”
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The Smart Community Podcast is produced by Perk Digital.