09 November 2020

Imagining the future(s) of mobility

Visual representation of Budapest future scenario titled Electric is beautiful

As part of its preparatory work in view of the deployment of pilots, SPROUT developed scenarios for its cities (Valencia, Padua, Budapest, Kalisz, and Tel Aviv) for the year 2030. Scenarios are ‘an internally consistent view of what the future might turn out to be’ and help deal with uncertainty. They are particularly useful in policymaking, as they show different possible futures and, in that way, help to prepare for them. Within SPROUT, scenarios were developed to imagine the urban mobility transformations underway in these cities if no new policy interventions are undertaken by 2030. In order to develop the scenarios, SPROUT used an innovative participatory methodology that is both quantitative and qualitative. It employed cross-impact balance analysis (CIB) and creative scenario workshops to generate consistent scenarios.

The scenarios are based on the drivers of urban mobility that each city’s stakeholders selected. These drivers are any factor that could influence a city’s urban mobility. In the first phase of the project a  list of drivers had been identified that fuel transformations in urban mobility, and each city selected the ones they thought were most relevant to them. Based on those drivers, draft scenarios were developed that were then subjected to sustainability and policy impact analyses. The goal of those analyses was to evaluate the impact of new technologies and business models on sustainability, and to assess the possible impact of the scenarios on urban mobility policy. As a last step, creative workshops were held online with stakeholders in all cities to develop the final narrative elements of each scenario.

In total, three scenarios were developed this way for each city. The first two scenarios were selected based on how different they are, in order to help prepare for distinct alternative futures. The third scenario is the ‘most likely scenario’, and it was based on what stakeholders thought will be the most likely development of the drivers making up the scenarios. All scenarios have a narrative and come accompanied with a visual representation of this narrative.

Curious to see the result of this exercise? Read the article dedicated to scenario-making in the pilot city of Tel-Aviv: https://sprout-civitas.eu/planning-for-alternative-futures-through-mobility-scenarios-the-case-of-tel-aviv

It you want to find out more details about the methodology employed and about the rest of the scenarios, take a look at Deliverable 3.4: https://sprout-civitas.eu/resources/d3-4-sprout-narrative-scenario.

Image credits: Véronique Hariga