Key Partners

Mobility issues are complex and rapidly changing. Developing solutions to mobility challenges requires innovative, systems thinking. That’s why we’ve developed sustained relationships with organizations, including the following, that give us access to the latest research, insights and integrative ability.

  • Sustainable Mobility and Accessibility Research and Transformation (SMART): Ford has been working with the University of Michigan on the SMART project since April 2005. SMART takes a collaborative, systems approach to developing innovative, sustainable and connected mobility and accessibility solutions in urban regions around the globe. Building on the seminal work of Moving the Economy in Toronto, SMART has pioneered new thinking, new partnerships and pilot projects related to emerging New Mobility markets and industry development.

    SMART has provided the empirical research and inspiration for Ford’s mega-city mobility projects. The insights of the SMART leadership team have served as a foundation for our innovative approach to business opportunities related to New Mobility and for our work with other key sectors, including manufacturing, IT, logistics, tourism, real estate, design and more. In addition to developing New Mobility business opportunities and markets, SMART and Ford are seeking to improve quality of life, employment and other community benefits in cities all over the world over the long term. We are convinced that our partnership with SMART will produce a new systems approach for addressing the increasingly complex challenges to achieving sustainable mobility and accessibility globally, while at the same time transforming the transportation industry into a more sustainable and equitable industry.

  • Georgia Tech Joint Research Projects: Ford and Georgia Tech have a strong cooperative relationship, focused particularly on sustainability. Our present joint research projects are funded under a multi-year agreement to partner in design, manufacturing and logistics, and in mega-city mobility research. Our collaborative approach has been effective in developing talent among students, faculty and Ford professionals, as knowledge is transferred between the university and company settings. For instance, the students develop enthusiasm for the contributions of engineering in the realms of manufacturing and sustainability, and they gain valuable work experience during summer internships. At present, Georgia Tech is assisting Ford by:

    • Developing the business case for urban mobility, especially pertaining to finance, information technology and vehicles (including fuels, design, carbon and powertrains)
    • Building on the results of Ford’s prototype projects, particularly with regard to software device connections