The Matrix vs. The Fifth Element—Assessing Future Scenarios of Urban Transport from a Sustainability Perspective

Creators: Kunze, Oliver and Frommer, Fabian
Title: The Matrix vs. The Fifth Element—Assessing Future Scenarios of Urban Transport from a Sustainability Perspective
Item Type: Article
Projects: ILR
Journal or Publication Title: Sustainability - Special Issue "Smart and Connected Freight for Sustainable Cities"
Page Range: p. 3531
Date: 2021
Divisions: Wirtschaftswissenschaften
Abstract: The future of urban transport (including passenger transportation and goods logistics) may develop in significantly different directions. Depending on changes in urban behavior, and depending on decisions made by lawmakers and governmental bodies, as well as by commercial players, this future may show a significantly reduced mobility of people and goods (for example, as depicted in the motion picture The Matrix, where people live immobilized in cocoons) or a significantly increased mobility (for example, as depicted in the motion picture The Fifth Element, where multiple layers of air traffic are added to road and rail traffic). We applied a systems thinking method to create a model for political decision makers and researchers. This model can contribute to a better understanding of the interrelations of societal factors (e.g., behavioral changes in the current COVID-19 situation), technological factors (e.g., the role of data traffic or emerging urban air traffic) and environmental factors (e.g., noise or CO2 emissions) in an urban mobility and logistics system. The research also shows that data traffic has the potential to partially substitute physical passenger and goods traffic under certain circumstances. Thus, data networks should conceptually be regarded as a new mode of transport that plays a role in the urban modal split.
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Kunze, Oliver and Frommer, Fabian (2021) The Matrix vs. The Fifth Element—Assessing Future Scenarios of Urban Transport from a Sustainability Perspective. Sustainability - Special Issue "Smart and Connected Freight for Sustainable Cities", 13 (6). p. 3531. ISSN 2071-1050

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