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The digital revolution and changes to individual and collective mobility (passenger transport)

The digital revolution and changes to individual and collective mobility (passenger transport)

Type of text : Opinion and report
Type of referral : Own initiative
Working group : Section for the Sustainable Management of Territories

Rapporteur(s) :

Associate public figure
CFDT Group
Date adopted : 14/04/2015 | Period : 2010-2015

The digital revolution is having a huge impact on our mobility and on how we travel. The proliferation of mobile terminals and networked devices and the networking and tracking of individuals and vehicles all serve to enhance and consolidate this trend. This benefits a growing number of passengers who seek real-time information that is tailored to their requirements.

In terms of public transport, digital technologies make travel easier, for example looking up routes, consulting timetables, deciding on a mode of transport, purchasing tickets and using mobility passes. It also helps ease traffic conditions with real-time information on traffic and disruptions, enabling providers to adapt their transport offer, and improve maintenance and security.
In terms of individual transport, digital technologies are encouraging the rapid development of a collaborative economy, with service platforms linking supply and demand, car pooling, car sharing, car hire with a driver (VTC), bicycle rental (VLS), car leasing, etc.
The hybrid "networked vehicle" is already a reality. Vehicles today have more on-board technology than the first Airbus aircraft. The smart roads of the future may give priority to public transport and vehicles with more passengers or guide drivers to alternative routes. The race is on between digital technology companies to produce the first driverless car, which will reduce accidents and ease congestion.
Digital technology is a new and indispensable mobility tool offering progress for all actors, be these service users, local authorities, businesses or public transport services. By facilitating a fairer and more effective organisation of our society and preserving the environment, digital mobility will lead to new public and private service offers based on the needs of individuals, and will reduce inequalities. Considerable growth and employment opportunities are emerging for Europe and for France, which possesses major public transport and vehicle manufacturing companies, as well as innovative start-ups that have yet to achieve global scope.
These positive prospects are accompanied by risks, which must be safeguarded against: increasing disparities between how well different areas are served; social exclusion linked to cost and the need to be able to use this new tool; job cuts and a lack of training to meet new requirements; capturing by global digital technology giants of the added value of digital mobility, thereby weakening our economy and reducing our tax revenues; unfair competition by new actors; operating failures due to a lack of reliability; encroachments upon individual freedoms due to the uncontrolled buying and selling of digital data.