Mobility issues are complex and rapidly changing – too big for one company to solve on its own. Developing solutions to mobility challenges requires innovative, systems thinking, across a wide range of stakeholder groups. We partner with organizations that can give us access to the latest research, insights and integrative ability.
For example, Ford has been working with the University of Michigan’s Sustainable Mobility and Accessibility Research and Transformation (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 markets and industry development.
SMART has provided the empirical research and inspiration for Ford’s 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, information technology, 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.
As part of our partnership, SMART has established technology transfer collaborations in selected cities worldwide, including locations in India, South Africa, Brazil, the Philippines, Europe, China, Canada and the U.S. Research projects and educational programs are designed to accelerate New Mobility implementation and industry mobilization in these regions and beyond. They focus on three primary areas: “Connecting the Dots” (taking a systems approach); “Moving Money” (advancing innovation and New Mobility industry, jobs and economic development); and “Moving Minds” (attitudes and behaviors of people and decision makers related to New Mobility).
For more information, visit the SMART website.
Also, see the Electrification section for a discussion of a partnership with Whirlpool and others focused on improving the energy efficiency of cars, homes and the electric grid as a system.