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Towards a Common European Framework for Sustainable Urban Mobility Indicators

Dates:
  • Fri 18 Sep 2020 10.00 - 15.30
  Add to Calendar 2020-09-18 10:00 2020-09-18 15:30 Europe/Paris Towards a Common European Framework for Sustainable Urban Mobility Indicators

With over 70% of EU citizens currently living in urban areas, achieving sustainability of cities has become one

of the defining challenges of our times. While urban areas can enable access to important social and economic

opportunities, they have also brought about new challenges related to traffic congestion, air- and noisepollution,

and inefficient transport systems. This makes cities and local authorities central actors in leading the

shift to smarter and more sustainable mobility.

As a cornerstone of its urban mobility policy, the European Commission has strongly encouraged European

towns and cities of all sizes to embrace the concept of Sustainable Urban Mobility Plans (SUMPs). By

improving accessibility to, through and within urban areas and promoting the shift towards more sustainable

modes of transport, SUMPs hold the potential to improve the overall quality of life for residents by addressing

issues of congestion, air- and noise-pollution, climate change, road accidents, unsightly on-street parking and

the integration of new mobility services. SUMPs consider the whole functional urban area, and foresee

cooperation across different policy areas, across different levels of government, and with local residents and

other principal stakeholders.

Despite the recognition of the wide range of benefits linked to this strategic urban mobility planning approach,

the implementation of SUMPs has been voluntary and remains limited to a small proportion of European cities.

This can be attributed to the lack of financial, technical and political support as well as quality control for

SUMPs from national and regional levels in the Member States where devolution gives regions more

competences. Furthermore, where plans have been developed these have often failed to fulfil minimum quality

standards due to a lack of uniform understanding of the SUMP concept.

A number of measures have been used by Member States to improve enforcement, such as for instance

preconditioning the provision of operational subsidies or grants on an approved SUMP and trained mobility

department. In order to overcome existing barriers and accelerate the uptake of high-quality SUMPs Europewide,

the European Commission is now exploring the idea of developing a common EU-framework for

sustainable urban mobility indicators (SUMI). A common, methodically sound and practically feasible

indicator set could enable public authorities to determine the current status of the city with regard to

sustainable urban mobility, including the identification of deficiency areas where additional action may be

DG-MOVE

required, to track progress towards set policy goals, to identify scope for improvement, and to better

understand the overall impact of urban mobility policies. It would also enable cities to benchmark against

other cities and compare against national and international data sets. The 19 indicators tested and modified to

the EU context within the SUMI project were originally developed by the World Business Council for

Sustainable Development with a promise to enable cities to perform a standardised evaluation of their

mobility system and measure the improvements resulting from the implementation of new mobility practices or

policies .

As implied above, however, the definition and selection of indicators, is a complex exercise. Indicators must be

widely applicable across Europe irrespective of city size and local characteristics in order to enable cities to

benchmark against other cities and to compare to national or international data sets.

What is more, SUMI need to be future-proof and adaptable to new urban mobility approaches (e.g., electric

scooters, Mobility as a Service (MaaS) and shared transport) and evolving travel habits. Another key question

relates to data collection methodologies and data standardisation which will need to be ensured in order to

allow comparability.

In view of this, the 7th Florence Intermodal Forum, co-organised by the Transport Area of the Florence School

of Regulation and the European Commission’s DG MOVE, will bring together policy makers from national-,

regional- and local-levels, together with public transport operators and manufacturers for a timely discussion

on the rationale behind- and challenges towards a common European framework for SUMI. More specifically,

the forum will explore the definition and appropriate indicator parameters; data collection techniques and data

standardisation, as well as more generally the question of enhancing enforcement of SUMPs. Last but not

least, the forum will draw on lessons learnt from the Covid-19 pandemic in relation to urban mobility in as far

as SUMI are concerned.

Online event - DD/MM/YYYY
  Online event -

With over 70% of EU citizens currently living in urban areas, achieving sustainability of cities has become one

of the defining challenges of our times. While urban areas can enable access to important social and economic

opportunities, they have also brought about new challenges related to traffic congestion, air- and noisepollution,

and inefficient transport systems. This makes cities and local authorities central actors in leading the

shift to smarter and more sustainable mobility.

As a cornerstone of its urban mobility policy, the European Commission has strongly encouraged European

towns and cities of all sizes to embrace the concept of Sustainable Urban Mobility Plans (SUMPs). By

improving accessibility to, through and within urban areas and promoting the shift towards more sustainable

modes of transport, SUMPs hold the potential to improve the overall quality of life for residents by addressing

issues of congestion, air- and noise-pollution, climate change, road accidents, unsightly on-street parking and

the integration of new mobility services. SUMPs consider the whole functional urban area, and foresee

cooperation across different policy areas, across different levels of government, and with local residents and

other principal stakeholders.

Despite the recognition of the wide range of benefits linked to this strategic urban mobility planning approach,

the implementation of SUMPs has been voluntary and remains limited to a small proportion of European cities.

This can be attributed to the lack of financial, technical and political support as well as quality control for

SUMPs from national and regional levels in the Member States where devolution gives regions more

competences. Furthermore, where plans have been developed these have often failed to fulfil minimum quality

standards due to a lack of uniform understanding of the SUMP concept.

A number of measures have been used by Member States to improve enforcement, such as for instance

preconditioning the provision of operational subsidies or grants on an approved SUMP and trained mobility

department. In order to overcome existing barriers and accelerate the uptake of high-quality SUMPs Europewide,

the European Commission is now exploring the idea of developing a common EU-framework for

sustainable urban mobility indicators (SUMI). A common, methodically sound and practically feasible

indicator set could enable public authorities to determine the current status of the city with regard to

sustainable urban mobility, including the identification of deficiency areas where additional action may be

DG-MOVE

required, to track progress towards set policy goals, to identify scope for improvement, and to better

understand the overall impact of urban mobility policies. It would also enable cities to benchmark against

other cities and compare against national and international data sets. The 19 indicators tested and modified to

the EU context within the SUMI project were originally developed by the World Business Council for

Sustainable Development with a promise to enable cities to perform a standardised evaluation of their

mobility system and measure the improvements resulting from the implementation of new mobility practices or

policies .

As implied above, however, the definition and selection of indicators, is a complex exercise. Indicators must be

widely applicable across Europe irrespective of city size and local characteristics in order to enable cities to

benchmark against other cities and to compare to national or international data sets.

What is more, SUMI need to be future-proof and adaptable to new urban mobility approaches (e.g., electric

scooters, Mobility as a Service (MaaS) and shared transport) and evolving travel habits. Another key question

relates to data collection methodologies and data standardisation which will need to be ensured in order to

allow comparability.

In view of this, the 7th Florence Intermodal Forum, co-organised by the Transport Area of the Florence School

of Regulation and the European Commission’s DG MOVE, will bring together policy makers from national-,

regional- and local-levels, together with public transport operators and manufacturers for a timely discussion

on the rationale behind- and challenges towards a common European framework for SUMI. More specifically,

the forum will explore the definition and appropriate indicator parameters; data collection techniques and data

standardisation, as well as more generally the question of enhancing enforcement of SUMPs. Last but not

least, the forum will draw on lessons learnt from the Covid-19 pandemic in relation to urban mobility in as far

as SUMI are concerned.


Location:
Online event -

Affiliation:
Robert Schuman Centre for Advanced Studies

Type:
Online Debate

Contact:
RSCAS Conference Centre - Send a mail

Organiser:
Matthias Finger

Attachment:
Programme
 

Page last updated on 18 August 2017