In recent years, a variety of forces (economic, environmental, and social) have quickly given rise to “shared mobility,” a collective of entrepreneurs and consumers leveraging technology to share transportation resources, save money, and generate capital. Bikesharing services, such as BCycle, and business-to-consumer carsharing services, such as Zipcar, have become part of a sociodemographic trend that has pushed shared mobility from the fringe to the mainstream. The role of shared mobility in the broader landscape of urban mobility has become a frequent topic of discussion. Shared transportation modes—such as bikesharing, carsharing, ridesharing, ridesourcing/transportation network companies (TNCs), and microtransit—are changing how people travel and are having a transformative effect on smart cities.
Ontario’s Minister Duguid Announces Toronto 2013
At Meeting of the Minds in San Francisco this year we were grateful to have Brad Duguid, the Minister of Economic Development and Innovation for Ontario, Canada with us via Cisco’s TelePresence Technology to announce Toronto as the host city for Meeting of the Minds 2013.
Watch the video above to hear his remarks about the event, which are also transcribed below.
Allow me to officially welcome all of you in advance to Toronto, Ontario for the Meeting of the Minds 2013. You’re going to be coming to a city and a province that’s now become a global hotbed for research and innovation. In fact, the Greater Toronto Area is now considered in the top four communities in the world in terms of business start-ups.
I want to welcome each and every one of you in advance to Toronto. I gotta tell you, with global innovation leaders like Cisco and Toyota this Meeting of the Minds 2013 is going to be absolutely spectacular. So I expect to see each and every one of you tuning in today and participating in the conference this year to be in Toronto for 2013.
Thank you all so much.
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Spotlighting innovations in urban sustainability and connected technology
A study by the US National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR) in 2008 found that the impact of routine weather events on the US economy equates annually to about 3.4% of the country’s GDP (about $485 billion). This excludes the impact of extreme weather events that cause damage and disruption – after all, even “ordinary” weather affects supply of and demand for many items, and the propensity of businesses and consumers to buy them. NCAR found that mining and agriculture are particularly sensitive to weather influences, with utilities and retail not far behind.
Many of these, disaster management included, are the focus of smart city innovations. Not surprisingly, therefore, as they seek to improve and optimize these systems, smart cities are beginning to understand the connection between weather and many of their goals. A number of vendors (for example, IBM, Schneider Electric, and others) now offer weather data-driven services focused specifically on smart city interests.
Urban Planning Today: Perception vs. Reality When the planning profession was still nascent in the 1950’s, well defined social needs and the desire to improve poor living conditions were the dominant basis for policy and regulation. By the time the 1970’s and 80’s...