The Transformation of Transportation: Which Borders Will We Have to Cross in the Future?

By Merja Hoppe and Andreas Christ.

Published by The Global Studies Journal

Format Price
Article: Print $US10.00
Published online: December 2, 2014 $US5.00

Political and technological change led to a change of frame conditions for the transportation system in the last decades, initiating a full system transformation. Consequently, the movers and shakers of policy, planning, and industry have to find strategies to cope with the changing environment. This paper aims to shed light on future developments and to provide supporting knowledge for decision making in transportation. More precisely, the paper discusses these main factors of transformation and their development: The transformation process and its global impacts as a reflection of a change in the system; the changing nature and relevance of borders in mobility and transportation, defining the range for decision making, including questioning which borders we will have to cross in the future; the economic effects, with a special focus on new actors entering the transportation market; the effects of market change and the transformation on the competitiveness of European transport; and visions for the transport system, where we compare past and present visions regarding the question of which paradigm will guide us in the future. Today sustainability is one of the main concepts expected to solve current and future problems, though it is questionable if it is an appropriate vision to guide the systems’ change or if it has to be replaced by a new paradigm. The combined analysis of past trends, recent changes, and upcoming futures provides valuable insights for understanding the transformations to expect and points towards the issues to be addressed in decision making with respect to the adaptation and evolution of transportation. Borders, as barriers preventing change, are considered crucial elements in any decision makers’ strategy; thus the discussion of their role in the transformation process is a key question. The article addresses general structures and trend with focus on a highly generalized perspective on the development of the transportation sector. The idea is to find principles of change which give an outlook on the likely future of the system, and to identify critical factors which may have a strong impact on the future development. This should enable us to find strategies to support the competitiveness of the European transport industry, as well as support decision making in the transformation process in other transport related fields, such as infrastructure, technology investment, or introduction of new mobility concepts. The work is based on intermediary results from the project RACE2050, funded in the EU-FP7 program.

Keywords: Transformation, Transport, Global Market, Competitiveness, Sustainability

The Global Studies Journal, Volume 7, Issue 3, December 2014, pp.1-12. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Published online: December 2, 2014 (Article: Electronic (PDF File; 665.965KB)).

Dr. Merja Hoppe

Senior Scientist, Leader Sustainable Mobility, Institute of Sustainable Development, Zurich University of Applied Sciences, Winterthur, Zurich, Switzerland

Andreas Christ

Research Assistant, Zurich University of Applied Sciences, Winterthur, Zurich, Switzerland


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