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Mistra Sustainable Accessibility and Mobility Services (SAMS)

To reduce greenhouse gas emissions, particle emissions and congestion, we need to radically rethink accessibility and mobility.


The vision of the Mistra SAMS Sustainable Accessibility and Mobility Services research program is that Sweden by 2030 largely has achieved a transition to far-reaching sustainable accessibility and mobility in urban regions through the implementation of disruptive accessibility services that meet the needs and preferences of broad groups of users and significantly contribute to sustainability targets.

This means that:

• the highly inefficient use of privately owned cars for commuting in dense urban traffic has, to a significant extent, been replaced by, e.g. a combination of work at local co-working hubs, the use of shared vehicles and home delivery services;

• the use of advanced multisided digital platforms has enabled the integration of services providing comprehensive possibilities for information, booking and payment of whole transport chains, substantially improving the competitiveness of intermodal transport;

• key actors such as policy makers, planners, entrepreneurs and service providers have acquired in-depth knowledge of the accessibility needs, prerequisites and preferences of different user groups, as well as increased capacity to address these needs in planning and policy making;

• the development, testing and adoption of innovative accessibility services that are offered on an “interoperable” basis have contributed to increased competitiveness of Swedish industry, as well as increased attractiveness of the urban areas in which these services are used (e.g. by reducing traffic congestion, increasing efficiency and improving air quality).

New services based on digital platform technology can contribute to a world with more connection, where travel is less destructive to the environment and un-travel is more satisfying. Advanced digital technologies have opened the path for configuring new accessibility options and combining these in smart ways, both reducing demand for transport and achieving more efficient use of transport capacity.

But new services such as car-sharing, workhubs or integrated ticket systems do not intrinsically contribute to sustainability. Nor do digital platforms automatically optimize for sustainable behaviour. Some new services have the potential to be transformative, some don’t. And those that do need a context in which they fulfill their full promise.

The Mistra SAMS research programme provides knowledge on the potential role of public actors, together with private actors, in creating that context. Mistra SAMS investigates how actors can facilitate societal transition to platform-based accessibility and mobility services that contribute substantially to sustainability.

Mistra SAMS defines “public actors” primarily as urban and regional actors responsible for traffic and accessibility, as well as digital and transport infrastructure (mainly regional authorities and municipalities). Research results can also be relevant for actors with planning and decision-making responsibility on a national and European level.

Mistra SAMS is hosted and managed by KTH Royal Institute of Technology in close cooperation with VTI, Swedish National Road and Transport Research Institute.

The program is funded by Mistra, The Swedish Foundation for Strategic Environmental Research.

Mistra SAMS is a co-operation of partners from academia, industry and the public sector. The partners are K2 – the Swedish knowledge centre for public transport, University of Karlstad, Lund University, Swedish Transport Administration, City of Stockholm, Botkyrka kommun, Ericsson, Sveriges Ingenjörer, Taxiförbundet, Smart Resenär.

A transdisciplinary and integrative research program

Mistra SAMS uses a deep transdisciplinary approach, which involves both interdisciplinarity and a close collaboration with users and practitioners. The involved researchers come from engineering, behavioral, design and social sciences. The program uses multiple methodologies that include a “living lab” approach which is based on collaboration and dialogue between researchers and stakeholders (e.g. entrepreneurs, service providers, transport and urban planners) and strong engagements with user groups as “co-creators” in a continuous innovation and knowledge building process.

Mistra SAMS is built up from a number of connected research projects, called work packages. You will find further information about each work package through the menu.

Illustration: Mistra SAMS integrated research approach
Illustration: Mistra SAMS integrated research approach
Belongs to: Mistra SAMS
Last changed: Feb 25, 2022