fbpx Developing Urban Mobility Policy in Response to Autonomous Vehicles: A Multi-Party Policy Development Simulation - Mark Fagan | Harvard Kennedy School

HKS Affiliated Authors


October 2021, Paper: "Mobility of people and goods is one of the defining characteristics of an urban environment. Efficient and effective mobility enables economic vitality, urban livability, and can contribute to an equitable environment. Unfortunately, this does not automatically happen. The arrival of transportation network companies, or TNCs (e.g., Uber, Lyft) demonstrated that ride-hailing provided a great service to many, but it also resulted in numerous undesirable consequences, such as increased congestion, safety and privacy concerns, the cannibalization of public transit, and unequal access to the service. Well-designed public policy is needed to foster the right outcomes to maximize public and private value. This challenge is exacerbated when disruptive innovation is taking place, and the introduction of autonomous vehicles (AVs) to move people and goods is just such a disruption. The right policy response to AVs must balance the interests of many stakeholders, from residents, visitors, and business owners to the AV companies and vulnerable populations. This simulation enables policymakers and stakeholders to develop the operating environment and regulations that position a municipality to tap the opportunities that AVs offer while minimizing the adverse consequences. This exercise is based on an anticipated scenario of how AVs may arrive in cities in the coming few years. It details the players and their interests. Using the descriptions provided, participants engage in a three-round simulation to reach consensus on the best path forward. The simulation is designed as a facilitated simulation for use by both practitioners and students. It concludes with a framework for how policymakers can migrate from their current position to their desired state."

HKS Faculty Author - Mark Fagan