The move towards creating tailor-made mobility solutions based on individuals’ needs gathered pace in Europe with the launch of the Mobility as a Service (MaaS) Alliance yesterday. Twenty organisations have already signed up to it - and today all delegates at the ITS World Congress in Bordeaux are invited to join the group and take part in its first meeting.
MaaS received political support from the Finnish government at last year’s European ITS Congress in Helsinki and, speaking at the official launch of the alliance, Anne Berner, the country’s Minister of Transport and Communications, said: “It is time to make the transport sector the most advanced sector in digitalism.”
Berner referred to the Aurora project, which is testing MaaS concepts in Lapland, saying: “We can promise you, if it works in Finland then it works anywhere.” The idea of the new initiative is to establish a pan-European, common approach by getting various public and private stakeholders involved – and Richard Harris, Director of Communications and Marketing at Xerox, said it represented a chance for the sector to get a grip on its future.
For the basic idea of MaaS to work – that is, providing easy access to the most appropriate transport mode or service as part of a bundle of flexible travel service options for users – economies of scale will be required. Jacob Bangsgaard, Director General, FIA Region I, said that in Europe there were millions of consumers “who would like to see these products in their cities”. Founding members include Ericsson, ERTICO – ITS Europe, FIA Region I, Transport for London and Xerox.
The first meeting of the MaaS Alliance will be held today at 13:30. ITS Sweden, stand A55