Recent Stories

An Interview with Susan Shaheen, the “Mother” of Shared Mobility

October 13, 2018

Lily Maxwell, smart cities content writer for, interviews Susan Shaheen Ph.D., a pioneer in future mobility strategies. She was among the first to observe, research, and write about changing dynamics in shared mobility and the likely scenarios through which automated vehicles will gain prominence. She is an internationally recognized expert in mobility and the sharing economy.

As the “mother” of shared mobility and someone who is well-known for working in sustainable transportation — what inspired you to work in this field?

My desire to work professionally in the area of the environment and technology goes back to high school. Sustainability, recycling, and climate change were not as popularized back then, and I clearly remember thinking: why does it have to be so hard for people do the right thing and support the environment in their choices?

When I went to college, I took as many environmental classes as I could, before completing a master’s degree in public policy, where I specialized in environmental policy. Then I went to Washington DC to “save the world”, but I soon realized that I wasn’t even close to saving the world from a policy perspective. So I decided that I need a higher degree and came to California...

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SAE International Publishes Set of Definitions for Shared Mobility Terms

October 3, 2018

SAE International announces it has published new definitions for shared mobility terms – “Taxonomy and Definitions for Terms Related to Shared Mobility and Enabling Technologies – J3163™.”

A consequence of the ever-growing and -evolving landscape of shared mobility is the lack of standardized terms and definitions. The shared and digital mobility industry is challenged with discrepancies in use and definition of terms, which often create ambiguity and confusion for policymakers, regulatory agencies, and the broader public.

J3163™ defines shared mobility as “the shared use of a vehicle, motorcycle, scooter, bicycle, or other travel mode; it provides users with short-term access to a transportation mode on an as-needed basis.” J3163™ includes definitions for shared modes (e.g., carsharing, bike-sharing, ride-sourcing, etc.) and enabling technologies.

“J3163™ brings together a taxonomy and definitions for the rapidly evolving area of shared and digital mobility. A common set of definitions, which crosses business models and international boundaries, is needed,” Susan Shaheen, PhD, Co-Director, Transportation Sustainability Research Center and Adjunct Professor, UC Berkeley; and document co-sponsor of J3163™, said...

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