Anthropolis Colloquium 2021

The Anthropolis Colloquium 2021 focuses on Envisioning Sustainable Futures for Urban Mobility. Taking place virtually on the 25/26 March from 9:30-12:00 and 14:00-16:30 CET, the Colloquium will address different perspectives and dimensions of urban mobility, its futures, technologies and innovations, and potentials to contribute to more sustainability and inclusivity.

On the first day, the sessions of Urban Mobility Futures and Mobility-as-a-Service in (Re)Evolution: Governance, Business Models & Opportunities will set the context of the colloquium with three keynote presentations, two roundtables, and the presentation of the Anthropolis Chair’s research and vision.

On the second day, the sessions Infrastructures of the Future and Sustainability Challenges for Innovation in Urban Mobility will address innovations and future requirements of mobility infrastructures, and the challenges of sustainability in the field of urban mobility. Four keynote presentations and two roundtables will provide a vast range of input and perspectives, again in contrast to the Chair’s work.

The Colloquium is facilitated through the Anthropolis Chair by IRT SystemX and CentraleSupélec. It brings the partners EDFEngieGroupe RenaultCommunauté d’Agglomération Paris-Saclay, and Nokia Bell-Labs together to work towards human-centred urban mobility.

The event will be in English only and is free of charge. We invite professionals, academics, researchers, policymakers, and students interested in Urban Mobility to join the discussions.

EDIT 30/03/2021: The event is now over. Thank you for joining. The sessions were recorded and we will publish more information soon.

EDIT 07/05/2021: The final report is now online. The recordings are available on the Anthropolis Chair YouTube Channel. We are looking forward to your feedback. 

Day 1, 25 March 2021

(all times in Central European Time | UTC+01:00)
9:30-10:15 | Words of Welcome
// Patrice Aknin, Scientific Director, IRT SystemX
// Bernard Yannou, Director Laboratoire Génie Industriel, CentraleSupélec
// Jakob Puchinger, Chair Holder
10:15-12:00 | Urban Mobility Futures
The first session sets the scene of the colloquium with a broader perspective into possible mobility futures and ways to explore or shape them. The perspective revolves around urban mobility in the context of urban life(styles), socio-technical transitions, and human-centred approaches.
10:15-10:45 | Keynote
Futuring Mobilities in Times of Uncertainty
// Ole B. Jensen, Professor of Urban Theory, Aalborg University (Denmark)
The development of urban mobility can in many ways be said to be the key determinant factor for the development of urban morphologies. The ways in which cities have grown and developed is a function of Mobilities systems and infrastructural landscapes connecting (and disconnecting) urban nodes and agglomeration in a complex geography of proximity and connectivity. With the advent of automated technologies and networked digital network technologies the future of urban mobility seems borderless. Yet, in the sobering midst of COVID-19 the world has come to if not a halt then at least a pause, and questions about future trajectories and development patterns have fueled heated public debates. This presentation will shortly discuss the role of urban Mobilities as a vital force of the network city. Then a discussion about futures and utopian imaginaries will follow as a framework for how to think about futures. COVID-19 as a globally disruptive event will then be discussed and finally some speculative reflections on whereto this might lead is offered.
10:45-11:15 | Q&A / Break
11:15-12:00 | Roundtable
The first roundtable discussion, moderated by Flore Vallet, will provide an interdisciplinary perspective on urban mobility futures. Some of the questions will be how urban lifestyles evolve and which impacts arise for urban mobility. Further, the long-term impacts of COVID-19 on mobility will be elaborated. An outlook on emerging technologies and approaches to localise and implement the sustainable mobility transition will set the scene for the colloquium.
// Marie Sevenet, European Institute for Energy Research
// Hervé Philippe, Senior Officer at the Innovation, Digital and Territories Task Force of the Directorate General for Infrastructures, Transports and the Sea, Ministry of Transport
// Sébastien Goethals, Managing Director, Citilinks
// Tjark Gall, PhD Candidate Urban Mobility Futures, Chair Anthropolis
14:00-16:30 | Mobility-as-a-Service in (Re)Evolution: Governance, Business Models & Opportunities
The second session centres around Mobility-as-a-Service (MaaS) as one of the solutions that illustrate Urban Mobility Futures. However, we need to push the analysis and methods to identify and evaluate the pitfalls of MaaS: Economic barriers, regulatory issues, policy development and user adoption. The conceptualisation of MaaS has not yet settled. The tension in its definition remains ongoing as researchers and industrials continue to identify the implications of this integrated sustainable (shared) mobility approach to existing mobility demand-supply regimes.
14:00-14:30 | Keynote
How to shape a mobility of the future which serves general interest? Potential emerging mobility services with automated vehicles and their related ecosystems in cities
// Guy Fournier, Professor affiliated to Pforzheim University, Institute for Industrial Ecology (Germany) and Université Paris-Saclay, CentraleSupélec, Laboratoire Génie Industriel (France)
Sustainable mobility is a main concern of citizens and a key success factor to succeed in meeting the goal of sustainable development. Platform economy and automated vehicles could revolutionise mobility and make cities more sustainable and resilient. However, first research papers show that, depending on the followed governance, the expected sustainability impact, could be improved or worsened. The aim of this article is to ana-lyse which mobility concepts should be followed to serve best the general interest and anticipate “the winner takes it all “effects” which cannot be undone later. In a first step, the principles of the internet economy and in particular platform economy and customer/passenger/citizen-centric approaches are analysed to understand how value and positive or negative externalities can be created and assessed qualitatively. Furthermore, it will be analysed under which circumstances potential benefits could be privatised and the costs socialised to the detriment of the public interest or not. In a second step, these findings are applied to the transport sector where digitalisation and in particular Mobility as a Service (MaaS) and automated vehicles (AV) can be seen as gamechanger. Four possible scenarios of future passenger transports in cities are then developed, evaluated and discussed with the beforementioned qualitative criteria. The article shows that an integration of AV into an intermodal MaaS, where public and private platforms integrate seamless transport offerings produces the most benefits for the cities and their citizens. Besides, two conditions for this emergence are emphasized: regulation and Standards (Open Data and APIs).
14:30-14:45 | Q&A
14:45-15:15 | Keynote
MaaS… what now? Identified challenges in the development of Mobility as a Service
// Maxime Audouin, Mobility Researcher and Head of Digital and Innovation Lab at Groupe Keolis
It has been ten years since the first MaaS breakthroughs and today it appears relevant to ask ourselves: What now? Although the initial promises of MaaS seemed very promising and appealing, a very limited number of MaaS services have been practically deployed… Why? Now seems to be a good time to reflect and question where to go next, based on the challenges that have been identified over the last decade in the implementation of Mobility as a Service. Special emphasis will be given to governance dynamics, which has proven to be of special importance in MaaS take-off. 
15:15-15:45 | Q&A / Break
15:45-16:30 | Roundtable
The second roundtable discussion, moderated by Jakob Puchinger will be the opportunity to open the discussion on the current and future challenges Mobility as a Service faces. The discussion will approach the challenges of MaaS from the academic and business perspective. The guests of the roundtable will share their expectations and experiences with MaaS from their field of work. Some of the topics that will nourish the discussion turn around the collaboration requirements between stakeholders in order to consolidate a strong MaaS solution and the existing regulatory gaps regarding infrastructure, data and other issues.
// Julia Janke, Researcher at Ecole des Ponts ParisTech (ENPC) in charge of project “MaaS as a regulatory tool”
// Aurélien Belhocine, Head of contracts, partnerships and digital services at Île-de-France Mobilités
// Ashvar Abdoul Haime, Project Lead at EDF
// Mariana Reyes, PhD Candidate, Anthropolis Chair

Day 2, 26 March 2021

09:30-12:00 | Infrastructures of the Future
The first session on the second day shines light on the requirements on the virtual, digital, and physical layers of the infrastructures of the future. Guiding questions are how to integrate various infrastructures layers to make them more safe, shareable, and resilient. Further, crucial infrastructures for enabling particular innovations such as MaaS are discussed.
09:30-10:00 | Keynote
Governing Transport in the Algorithmic Age
// Katja Schechtner, Research Fellow, MIT Senseable City Lab and Visiting Professor, HDM Stuttgart
Katja Schechtner will explore where automated decision-making systems impact transport activity, and how. More and more transport activity is influenced by digital infrastructures and algorithms. Automated decision-making is taking hold in areas from health care and housing to media and mobility. In transport, algorithms are a core feature for services from public transport scheduling to routing apps, bicycle-sharing to self-driving technology, parcel delivery to the dispatching of ride services. How can policymakers ensure mobility driven by algorithmic code supports societal objectives?
10:00-10:15 | Q&A
10:15-10:45 | Keynote
Digital Infrastructure – the key for future mobility solutions
// Martin Dirnwöber, Business Unit Digital Infrastructure & Data, Austria Tech
Rapid development in areas such as Automated Driving, Shared Mobility or Mobility as a Service will facilitate new and promising mobility solutions. Coordination will be essential to fully exploit the potential of these solutions and to avoid negative effects. This presentation will address Digital Infrastructure as a key element for the coordination and support of new mobility solutions.
10:45-11:15 | Q&A / Break
11:15-12:00 | Roundtable
During the third roundtable discussion, moderated by Jakob Puchinger, participants will share their vision on how future mobility infrastructures will look like, what technologies will they rely on, what are the challenges that they are facing; the interdependence between the different infrastructures such as mobility and power systems; distribution of roles between digital/physical infrastructure and moving vehicles and how to improve the resilience of the increasingly complex mobility infrastructure. All within a context of human-centred approach whose objective is primarily to benefit the users.
// Adam F. Abdin, Future Cities Lab, CentralePékin / CentraleSupélec
// Eric Lacombe, Nokia Bell Labs
// Yann Briand, Innovation and R&D manager, Mobility Sector Leader at IRT SystemX
// Edgar Ke, Mobility Innovation and Deeptech Startups at Nokia Bell Labs and Anthropolis Chair
// Tarek Chouaki, PhD Candidate, Anthropolis Chair
14:00-16:00 | Sustainability Challenges for Innovation in Urban Mobility
The last session zooms out again and explores what possibilities exist to evaluate the sustainability of emerging mobility modes and their infrastructures, and what the societal impacts associated with mobility data are. Lastly, a guiding question will be the challenge of how to balance the efficiency and sufficiency of mobility systems.
14:00-14:30 | Keynote
Sustainable mobility through business action
// Milena Klasing Chen, Manager, Mobility, World Business Council For Sustainable Development (WBCSD), Switzerland
Sustainable transport is a key challenge for achieving the Sustainable Development Goals and global climate targets for the coming years. Businesses are essential to tackle this challenge. Companies can reduce scope 3 emissions and costs and become more attractive employers by encouraging sustainable commuting options. They are also key stakeholders in transforming fleets and in tackling transport demand.
14:30-14:45 | Q&A
14:45-15:15 | Keynote
The challenges for Hydrogen Mobility: Combining Local and Global Cooperation
// Jean-Pierre Ponssard, CNRS-CREST Ecole Polytechnique | Chair Energy and Prosperity
Hydrogen plans across Europe prioritise the use of hydrogen for mobility, more specifically for heavy and light duty vehicles (trucks, buses, trains, light commercial vehicles…). This choice seems quite judicious; it is in this type of segments that hydrogen has advantages over batteries. Ongoing projects are most often developing around regional clusters, whose analysis highlights two challenges: the high fixed costs of the infrastructure on the one hand, and the high purchasing cost of vehicles on the other, whereas the question of the cost of hydrogen is much less critical than for industrial uses.

The first challenge must be solved locally by ensuring sufficient and predictable demand, for example by setting up supply-demand partnerships such as the Hype cab company in Paris, which brings together cab operators, the hydrogen supplier Air Liquide, and Toyota, which supplies the vehicles. Except for this special case, many regional programs suffer structurally from a lack of coordination between the implementation of the infrastructure and the potential users. Encouraging the pooling of uses is particularly welcome, but it is complex to implement because the businesses may be so different. Money is not necessarily the keystone.

The challenge of the high cost of hydrogen vehicles – a diesel bus, for example, costs €210k, a battery bus about twice that and a hydrogen bus three times that – cannot be solved locally. Meeting this challenge calls for a national, and more likely European, approach to generate enough volume to lower the cost of vehicles by relying on manufacturers. While Europe has major players in certain critical components (fuel cells, high-pressure tanks), European carmakers are slow to invest in hydrogen. Their priority commitment is to battery-powered electric vehicles. How can we create incentives for them to invest in another technology, knowing that they are also facing a crisis?

15:15-15:45 | Q&A / Break
15:45-16:30 | Roundtable
The last roundtable will be moderated by Jakob Puchinger and addresses the critical challenges of sustainability transitions in the mobility and transport sector.
// Cyrille François, Post-doctoral researcher, LVMT-Ponts ParisTech
// Stéphanie Jumel, Electric Mobility R&D Program Manager, EDF Lab Paris Saclay
// Alexandre Vaudrey, Senior Lecturer (PhD), LabECAM, ECAM Lyon, Université de Lyon
// Flore Vallet, Senior Researcher, Anthropolis Chair



Endorsed by the International Society of City and Regional Planners.