Humanity is at the cusp or a third major revolution. Not one driven by animal power or steam engine but rather by the information crunching power of computers linked in a global web: Alvin Toffler’s so-called Third Wave has finally reached the shores of our collective consciousness.
The Third Wave will not only spawn intelligent driverless vehicles powered by non-polluting sources of energy, but the integration of all forms of transportation into a network optimized for each and all users. This shift will have a profound impact on humanity’s relation to the occupation of space and its use of time. The development of the world’s cities and towns, where most of humanity will coalesce in the decades to come, will be entirely redefined by the autonomous vehicles that will move both humans and merchandise in a seamless fashion on land, on and under water, in the air and, eventually, even in space. All this traffic will be driven by Big Data, the quintessential repository of trillions of factoids, the building blocks, or atoms if you prefer, of our increasingly sentient cities and global civilization.
The Transport Evolution Institute’s mandate is to study, as its name suggests, the evolution of transport. The Institute will allow all stakeholders, whether they work in industry, government, academia or NGOs, to become members and have access to its data and reports.
The Institute will thereby allow members to better grasp all the relevant transport-related issues that could undermine a smooth transition from the Second to the Third Wave. History has shown that the transition from the agricultural era to the industrial one, because of our collective lack of vision and planning, left many destitute. Here, we have an opportunity to avoid those mistakes.
In addition to its many safety, environmental and other benefits, autonomous vehicle technologies will play an important role in the democratization of transport by allowing access to those unable to drive due to age or disabilities. The automation of transport will lead to a dramatic lowering of its overall monetary and social costs.
Cities and towns will evolve into much more welcoming, greener places as more efficient transportation will occupy less space, allowing municipalities to improve their environments.
The Transport Evolution Institute’s goal is to anticipate changes related to the evolution of mobility, to develop optimal strategies for our collective benefit and to act as an instrument for their implementation.