SCCER-Mobility

How to foster new mobility lifestyles

What factors increase the openness to switch to a sustainable long-term mobility lifestyle from previously using a combustion engine car?

A lot of research about sustainable mobility is conducted on mode choice behaviour and less so on long-term mobility decisions, especially considering a multimodal mobility lifestyle. We want to close this gap and address the above research question with a comprehensive multiple-price list choice experiment. It is implemented within the Swiss Household Energy Demand Survey (SHEDS) 2020 within the Framework of SCCER Mobility (https://www.sccer-mobility.ch/) and SCCER CREST (https://www.sccer-crest.ch/research/swiss-household-energy-demand-survey-sheds/).

The future of private car mobility is foreseen to be dominantly electric, powered by batteries. Yet, considering environmental impacts of electric vehicles, smaller vehicles with a smaller battery (and thus a smaller range) should be preferred over cars with bigger batteries. This results in a trade-off between range and environmental impact from the battery size. We will address this challenge by proposing alternatives with a small electric vehicle (including a smaller battery) in combination with either public transport or carsharing for long-range trips where the range of the EV is not sufficient. We further propose an alternative without any car ownership, as this would result in an even more sustainable mobility lifestyle.

Participants of the survey were shown a scenario where their main household car would break in 3 years from now. They then have to decide whether they would keep their current mobility lifestyle including the same car or if they would opt for an alternative. The following figure illustrates the 4 different options the respondents of the choice experiment can choose. 1) they could keep their current mobility behaviour including buying the same car again 2) buy a small electric vehicle for everyday trips until 200km a day in combination of using public transport for trips exceeding 200km a day 3) the same small electric vehicle in combination of carsharing for longer trips and 4) using a mix of public transport and carsharing for all trips.

We further included a control group and 3 treatments. Each respondent only answered the control survey or the survey with one of the following treatments:

  • Charging treatment: A situation with optimized charging possibilities at home and at work
  • Sharing treatment: A situation with optimized carsharing possibilities
  • TCO treatment: Information about the total cost of ownership of the current mobility lifestyle and the alternative

First glimps on the results are promising as people who received the charging treatment tend to opt more for the alternatives compared to the control group.

We will finalize the data analysis this year, so stay tuned for updates to this study!

Verkehr der Zukunft 2060

Nischeninnovation und Diffusion im Mobilitätsmarkt

Der Transportsektor wird in den nächsten Jahren und Jahrzehnten grundlegende Umwälzungen erfahren. Wesentliche Treiber stellen dabei technologische Entwicklungen und Megatrends wie die Digitalisierung, Automatisierung oder der demographische Wandel dar. Im Rahmen des Forschungsprojektes Verkehr der Zukunft 2060: Neue Angebotsformen – Organisation und Diffusion hat das Institut für Nachhaltige Entwicklung (INE) der ZHAW zusammen mit der Firma Rapp Trans AG die Auswirkungen von Trends und Entwicklungen auf die Organisation des privaten und öffentlichen Verkehrs untersucht, um einen Einblick in potentielle zukünftige Geschäftsmodelle und Organisationsformen der Mobilität zu erhalten.

In einem Teilprojekt ging es darum zu beschreiben, wie eine Transformation eines soziotechnischen Systems – wie dem Mobilitätssystem – ablaufen resp. initiiert werden kann. Dazu ist ein Verständnis von Veränderungsprozessen auf unterschiedlichen Betrachtungsebenen eine zentrale Voraussetzung und es bedarf eines analytischen Rahmens, um die Mechanismen und Dynamiken der Transformation in einem System identifizieren und charakterisieren zu können.

Multi-Level Perspective (MLP)

Als solcher analytischer Rahmen kann die Multi-Level-Perspective (dt. Mehr-Ebenen-Modell) von Geels (2002, 2012) herangezogen werden, welche im Kontext historischer Transitionen entwickelt wurde und darauf abzielt, die Gesamtheit eines systemischen Wandels als integralen Prozess abzubilden (vgl. nachfolgende Abbildung). Mit diesem theoretischen Ansatz kann erklärt werden, weshalb sich in modernen Gesellschaften einige Trends und Innovationen mit der Zeit zu etablieren vermögen, während andere sich nicht durchsetzen und wieder verschwinden resp. im Stadium einer Nischeninnovation verbleiben.

Die Kernannahmen von Geels (2002, 2012) lauten:

  • Innovationen entwickeln sich zuerst in Nischen, die noch weitgehend ausserhalb der allgemeinen Wahrnehmung liegen und lediglich von einer kleinen Anzahl von Akteuren in Netzwerken mit ähnlichen Erwartungen getragen werden. Innovationen innerhalb dieser Nischen sind weitgehend von Marktmechanismen entkoppelt und werden durch spezifische Förder- und Investitionsmassnahmen von den Nischenakteuren weiterentwickelt.
  • Die Nischen stehen in einem engen Zusammenhang resp. interagieren mit einem gegebenen soziotechnischen Regime (bestehend aus Wirtschaft, Politik, Kultur, Technologie, Gesellschaft), welches sich durch mehr oder weniger gefestigte Akteurskonstellationen, Regeln, Konventionen und Strukturen charakterisieren lässt. Diese eingespielten Regime-Strukturen können über längere Zeiträume für Stabilität und Erwartungssicherheit sorgen, bringen jedoch oftmals auch Pfadabhängigkeiten mit sich. Die soziotechnischen Regime können dementsprechend durch Nischeninnovationen entweder Veränderung erfahren, oder aber bremsend auf die technologische Entwicklung einwirken und einen Markteintritt verhindern.
  • Die soziotechnischen Regime wiederum sind in dauerhafte und übergreifende Entwicklungen und Rahmenbedingungen eingebettet, welche von den beteiligten Akteuren nicht direkt beeinflusst werden können. Diese übergeordnete Landscape beinhaltet gesellschaftliche Megatrends wie Globalisierung oder Individualisierung, aber auch allgemeinere Entwicklungen wie der globale Klimawandel. In bestimmten Fällen können Entwicklungen innerhalb dieser Landscape Druck auf das bestehende Regime ausüben und dadurch Fenster für den Markteintritt von Nischeninnovationen (sog. «windows of opportunity for transitions») eröffnen.

Innovations- und diffusionsrelevante Faktoren

Mit Hilfe dieses theoretischen Ansatzes wurde in einem nächsten Schritt untersucht, welche innovations- und diffusionsrelevanten Faktoren im Mobilitätsmarkt für spezifische Schlüsseltechnologien der Zukunft existieren, welche darüber entscheiden könnten, ob sich eine Technologie (wie z.B. das autonome Fahren) im Mobilitätsmarkt wird etablieren können oder im Stadium einer Nischeninnovation verbleiben wird:

Soziale Faktoren
• Gesellschaftliche Akzeptanz
• Ethische Fragen
• Befindlichkeitsstörungen

Technologische Faktoren
• Datensicherheit
• Technologie-Reifepfad
• Vernetzung und Verzweigung im bestehenden Verkehrssystem
• Unvorhergesehene Trendabbrüche bei “Enabling”-Technologien

Wirtschaftliche Faktoren
• Zeitpunkt und Form der Markteinführung
• Marktpotenzial resp. Nachfrage
• Branchenspezifische Interessen und Strategien
• Investitionskosten und Infrastrukturbedarf
• Produktionszeit und –kosten
• Verfügbarkeit und Abhängigkeit von Materialien

Ökologische Faktoren
• CO2-Reduktionspotenzial
• Ressourcenverbrauch
• Auswirkungen auf Raum und Landschaft

Politische Faktoren
• Gesetzliche Grundlagen und Rahmenbedingungen
• grenzüberschreitende Koordination und Harmonisierung
• Sicherheitsfragen

Schlussfolgerungen

Die unterschiedlichen Faktoren verdeutlichen, dass es im laufenden Transformationsprozess der Mobilität nicht nur technologische Entwicklungen zu berücksichtigen gilt (obwohl unsere Wahrnehmung des Transformationsprozesses sich durch Medienberichte regelmässig auf diese Ebene beschränkt), sondern gleichzeitig auch eine Vielzahl an sozialen, ökologischen, wirtschaftlichen und politischen Faktoren darüber entscheiden, wie wir uns in Zukunft fortbewegen werden. Gerade im Individualverkehr werden die Entwicklungen nach wie vor stark von den Automobilkonzernen und den amerikanischen Plattformgiganten beeinflusst, welche weiterhin danach streben, möglichst viele Fahrzeuge an den Mann resp. die Frau zu bringen. In der Folge bleibt der Regime-Zustand stabil und Innovationen für ein nachhaltiges und auf kollektive Nutzung ausgerichtetes Transportsystem vermögen sich nicht im Markt durchzusetzen. Es fragt sich also, inwiefern in der aktuellen Nachhaltigkeitsdebatte ein Ansatz, welcher den Systemwandel primär aus einer von unten nach oben gerichteten inventionistischen Perspektive denkt, noch zielführend ist? Es könnte sich durchaus anbieten, Veränderungsprozesse vermehrt in umgekehrter Richtung zu denken, i.S. einer grundlegenden Änderung unseres Mindsets am Ursprung, um “top down” Druck auf die bestehenden Regimestrukturen auszuüben und neue “Möglichkeitsfenster” für nachhaltige Innovationsprozesse zu eröffnen – übrigens ein Ansatz, wie ihn das Wuppertal-Institut seit Jahren in seinen Arbeiten rund um das Phänomen der grossen Transformation und der Zukunftskunst als eine kulturelle Revolution verfolgt.

Uncategorized

Social, mobility-related and energetic consequences of the Covid-19-induced home office for the employees of the ZHAW School of Engineering

The Covid-19 crisis has introduced disruptive changes in the way we organise our everyday life. One of those changes is the increased deployment of home office. Before the Covid-19 crisis, home office has been predominantly discussed in the context of its positive implications for work-life balance and sustainable mobility. However, relying solely on home office as a working mode, as practiced wherever possible during the Covid-19 crisis, is a new reality that requires the acceptance as well as mobility and energy consumption effects of home office to be reconsidered. These intriguing considerations motivated two institutes of the ZHAW School of Engineering – the Institute of Sustainable Development (INE) and the Institute of Energy Systems and Fluid Engineering (IEFE) – to explore the consequences of Covid-19 on the acceptance of home office and its mobility-related and energetic effects among the ZHAW School of Engineering employees. The project starts in July 2020 and ends in December 2020.

The question regarding the acceptance of home office is going to be explored by the means of an online survey amongst the ZHAW School of Engineering employees. The core of the survey is going to be organised around the perceived advantages and disadvantages, acceptable degree as well as the influence of personal characteristics, such as socio-demographics or psychological factors, on the acceptance of home office.

We analyse the mobility impact of home office during the Covid-19 crisis based on the above mentioned survey as well as the secondary data, such as those provided by Apple and Google or the weekly uploaded data within the Mobis Covid 19 project, jointly conducted by ETH and the University of Basel. Within the analysis of the mobility impact of home office a special attention is going to be addressed to the effect on the attitudes towards and the use of bicycle as a means of transport.

The energy impact of home office during the Covid-19 crisis is going to be analysed by quantifying the energy consumption reduction at the ZHAW School of Engineering caused by the Covid-19 crisis and contrasting it to the energy consumption increase induced by the switch to home office. The analysis is going to be based on the energy consumption data on the household level available from current and completed projects. From the raw consumption data different activities and the use of different devices can be deduced. The data of individual households is going to be aggregated to the ZHAW School of Engineering level.

Uncategorized

New Team Member at INE: A Self-Introduction of Michael Stiebe

Grüezi and Hello!

My name is Michael Stiebe and I am a proud new member of the Sustainable Mobility research group under the competent guidance of Dr. Andrea Del Duce and Prof. Dr. Maike Scherrer at the Institute of Sustainable Development at ZHAW SoE. I am 26 years old and I was born and raised in the Harz Mountains in the heart of Germany. Apart from my great interest in research and science, my dear passion is music, specifically piano and organ. Since I was 15 years old, I have been working as an organist for many different congregations within the Lutheran-Evangelic State Church of Brunswick.

I hold a master’s degree in International Hospitality and Service Management from the University of Stavanger, Norway as well as a master’s degree in Risk Analysis and Decision Support from Stockholm University, Sweden. Ever since the beginning of my undergrad studies my interest in human mobility grew constantly to the point that it became one of my core interests, both in a sense of everyday and physical mobility as well as temporary migration.

The latter became the key subject of my master thesis at the University of Stavanger carrying the title: The Transnationalization and Commodification of Care Labor: A Comparative Study on Contemporary Issues in Au Pair Tourism in Norway and Australia with a Strong Focus on Employment Legislation

My master thesis at Stockholm University was concerned with everyday/physical mobility and investigated mobility risks and the perception of such during the ongoing diesel crisis, i.e. increasing numbers of diesel engine restricting policies and diesel driving bans. Its title was: The European Diesel Crisis: An In-Depth Study on Perceived Urban Mobility Risks and Decisions of Diesel Passenger Car Users

My academic journey has led me through four different countries, that is Sweden, Island, Norway, and Australia and is now continuing in beautiful Switzerland where I am contributing my knowledge and skills to the field of mobility research and am learning eagerly from outstanding researchers and excellent coworkers.

As life writes its own stories, I could not have picked any better point in time to start my new job than on April 1st, amidst the corona crisis when the world faced immense changes in mobility behavior. The current situation has demonstrated well how quickly mobility offers, mobility demand, and mobility behavior can change, and it made me acknowledge once again how interesting and vital mobility research is. Working from home has not kept me from getting to know my amazing coworkers. Thankfully, our daily 10 a.m. virtual team coffee break has made it possible to exchange knowledge and to socialize.

After two refreshing months of work at INE, I am already involved in three different research projects, get some further education and programming skills in the ZHAW R-Bootcamp, and receive the chance to work on my Ph.D. research project.

I am looking forward to actively participating in many more interesting research projects, taking on new challenges, as well as continuing my journey at the Institute of Sustainable Development.

Yours truly,

Michael Stiebe

Our projects

SCCER – Mobility

Can carsharing further increase the acceptance of electric mobility?

Electromobility is considered to play a central role in the decarbonisation of mobility, provided that the electricity is generated from renewable sources. While northern countries such as Norway, Iceland or Sweden already have a market share of more than 10% of the new car sales for electric vehicles (fully battery electric vehicles and plug-in hybrids) and are thus leading the way, the figure for Switzerland is less than 6%. If only the fully battery-powered electric vehicles (BEV) are considered, this figure drops to below 4%.

In the Swiss Competence Center for Energy Research – Mobility (SCCER – Mobility), which is funded by Innosuisse, the ZHAW INE team has investigated the question of whether people who have experience with carsharing display characteristics that are conducive to the acceptance of e-mobility. To this end, participants in the Swiss Household Energy Demand Survey (SHEDS) were placed in a decision-making situation: either to buy a car if they do not own one, or to replace their own car within one year. This was followed by several sequential-stated-preference questions like preferred car size and car type (gasoline, diesel, hybrid, plug-in-hybrid or fully electric).

Clearly, the above graph suggests that there might be a significant effect of having carsharing experience on the car type choice. However, as many variables could have an effect on this distribution, e.g. carsharing users living in cities with favorable conditions for buying an electric vehicle, variables related to socio-economics, mobility characteristics, attitudes and values were included in a binary logistic regression model to account for these confounding effects.

The regression analysis suggests that there is indeed a significant effect of having carsharing experience on the car type choice decision, with people who have carsharing experience being less likely to prefer a gasoline or diesel car.

This study thus argues that carsharing experience might be a lever for further increasing the diffusion of electric vehicles as carsharing experience could foster a more sustainable mobility lifestyle, including electric vehicles.

The results will be presented at the Forum on Integrated and Sustainable Transport Systems in Delft – Netherlands on 3-5 November 2020.