Shared-Use Mobility Summit: Retrospective from North America’s First Gathering on Shared-use Mobility


Shared-use mobilitythe shared use of a vehicle, bicycle or other low-speed modeis an innovative transportation solution that enables users to have short-term access to a transportation mode. In North America, shared-use mobility encompasses the submarkets of carsharing, bikesharing, ridesharing, on-demand ride services, scooter sharing, shuttle services, and other emerging industries. In October 2013, the University of California, Berkeley’s Transportation Sustainability Research Center (TSRC) hosted the inaugural Shared-Use Mobility Summit in San Francisco, California. The summit was a two-day event that facilitated a dialogue among nearly 300 participants representing close to 200 organizations. Participants included mobility providers, policymakers, governmental agencies, non-profits, technologists, academics, media, other stakeholders, and affiliated industries. One hundred and five (105) private companies attended the summit, and 62 governmental agencies were represented at the summit. Additionally, 44 academics from 17 universities participated. Of the 194 organizations represented, 26 were affiliated with carsharing, 16 with bikesharing, and 6 were associated with ridesharing and ondemand ride services or transportation network companies (TNCs).

In recent years, economic, environmental, and social forces have quickly pushed shared-use mobility from the fringe to the mainstream, and its role in urban mobility has become a frequent point of discussion. The summit provided a diverse array of stakeholders the opportunity to advance the discussion by addressing key issues and helping to shape the future of shared-use mobility. This white paper, generously supported by the Rockefeller Foundation, discusses the state of the industry and trends in major shared-use mobility sectors: carsharing (including roundtrip, one-way, and peer-to-peer), bikesharing, ridesharing, and on-demand ride services (e.g., TNCs). The paper also summarizes summit sessions and highlights issues discussed at the event including: 1) scaling of the shared-use mobility sector; 2) integration of shared-use mobility services and public transit; and 3) micro- and macro-policy considerations related to insurance, taxation, and parking.

We conclude this paper with a discussion of the future of shared-use mobility within the transportation industry, need for multimodal integration, and important issues to be addressed. Key policy considerations arising from the summit include: 1) the need for consistent shared-use definitions and standards; 2) public funding for shared-use mobility; and 3) public transit integration. Developments emerging from this inaugural event include a 2014 summit focused on policy innovations and the launch of a new Shared-Use Mobility Center.

Susan Shaheen, PhD and Matt Christensen
Publication date: 
June 6, 2014
Publication type: