Building Smarter Transit Systems, One Mobile Ticket at a Time
For the first time in the world’s history, more of us are living in cities than outside. By 2050, this number is set to increase to nearly 70 percent. Already today, urban infrastructure and transit systems are under pressure, with crowding and congestion impacting resident, visitors and businesses on a daily basis.
Clearly, cities are struggling under the weight of their own success – whether in developed markets where people are choosing to move back into cities rather than putting down roots in suburbs, or in emerging markets where workers are moving from the countryside to new urban centres.
At MasterCard, we have been collaborating with some of the biggest cities – such as London – and with some of the leading technology companies in the world to find smart ways to address these challenges. Our global partnership with Masabi – the leading developer of Mobile Ticketing solutions for transit systems – is the latest step in this journey.
The first city to benefit from this partnership will be Athens, whose current cash-only system transports 1 million people each day. Converting to a digital, smart-phone based system will bring commuters shorter ticketing times, more efficient transactions and speedier access to all forms of transport.
Still more important will be the long-term rewards that the transport authority and the city as a whole will reap. With reduced costs for handling cash, greater proportional investment can be redirected towards transport infrastructure and services for commuters in years to come.
Masabi is already at the heart of some of the leading transit systems in the US and UK. Together with MasterCard solutions such as MasterPass – our secure digital payment service – we are confident that we can bring smarter, better connected transit systems to cities and citizens all over the globe.
Leave your comment below, or reply to others.
Please note that this comment section is for thoughtful, on-topic discussions. Admin approval is required for all comments. Your comment may be edited if it contains grammatical errors. Low effort, self-promotional, or impolite comments will be deleted.
Read more from MeetingoftheMinds.org
Spotlighting innovations in urban sustainability and connected technology
I see the outcomes of Duke Pond as a representation of the importance of the profession of landscape architecture in today’s world. Once obscured by the glaring light and booming voice long-generated by building architects, landscape architects are steadily emerging as the designers needed to tackle complex 21st century problems. As both leaders and collaborators, their work is addressing the effects of rising sea level on coastal cities, creating multi-modal pedestrian and vehicular transportation systems to reduce carbon emissions, reimagining outdated infrastructure as great urban places, and as with the case of Duke Pond, mitigating the impacts of worsening drought.
AI has enormous potential to improve the lives of billions of people living in cities and facing a multitude of challenges. However, a blind focus on the technological issues is not sufficient. We are already starting to see a moderation of the technocentric view of algorithmic salvation in New York City, which is the first city in the world to appoint a chief algorithm officer.
There are 7 primary forces determining the success of AI, of which technology is just one. Cities must realize that AI is not the quick technological fix that vendors sell. Not everything will be improved by creating more algorithms and technical prowess. We need to develop a more holistic approach to implementing AI in cities in order to harness the immense potential. We need to create a way to consider each of the seven forces when cities plan for the use of AI.
In New Zealand, persistent, concentrated advocacy and legal cases advanced by Māori people are inspiring biocentric policies; that is, those which recognize that people and nature, including living and non-living elements, are part of an interconnected whole. Along the way, tribal leaders and advocates are successfully making the case that nature; whole systems of rivers, lakes, forests, mountains, and more, deserves legal standing to ensure its protection. An early legislative “win” granted personhood status to the Te Urewera forest in 2014, which codified into law these moving lines:
“Te Urewera is ancient and enduring, a fortress of nature, alive with history; its scenery is abundant with mystery, adventure, and remote beauty … Te Urewera has an identity in and of itself, inspiring people to commit to its care.”
The Te Urewera Act of 2014 did more than redefine how a forest would be managed, it pushed forward the practical expression of a new policy paradigm.