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When we began our collaboration to bring a global audience to the Russian capital for a discussion on urban mobility, we knew that many leading names would come to the table to debate strategy and innovation…
We of course did not know then that the table in question would be a digital one!
In 2020, UITP and the Moscow Department of Transport entered into an agreement to bring the Leaders in Urban Transport Council to the capital city.
Like many other international events, it was impacted by the restrictions brought on with the coronavirus pandemic – but this did not stop us from holding the necessary discussions on public transport during and post-COVID.
From February until May this year, UITP and the Moscow Department of Transport welcomed hundreds of attendees from across the globe to our series of digital gatherings.
Featuring new speakers and topics for each of the five editions, our Urban Council series took a deep dive into what the role of public transport has been during COVID-19, and crucially what the sector needs to do next to truly build back better.
Collaboration is key and the information and insight shared between colleagues helps all of us to advance public transport.
The wrap up Report, Leaders in Urban Transport Council 2021, is now available. The publication shares insights from each of the sessions, summarises different measures taken across the world, trends moving forward and perspectives from our global speakers.
I think we have found a way, with this Leaders series, to share our ideas. I hope that similar digital gatherings will continue alongside physical meetings in the future.
The first event was dedicated to ‘The Bigger Picture’, looking closely at the initial impact of the past 12 months on the sector, and what the future may look like if we continue to place collaboration as of key importance.
It has not been an easy time for the sector with financial losses and lower ridership numbers, growing economical pressure and an initial loss of trust with passengers. With this in mind, our second gathering focused on ‘Changing Customer Expectations’. It is the people who make public transport, and the people are our passengers. With ongoing sensitivity for crowding bringing new expectations, a lot of work has needed to be done to keep passenger’s trust intact.
The second webinar discussed innovative products and services to provide attractive channels and offers meeting changed customer expectations. Public transport must always adapt and with new concepts and partnerships to cater for more individualised mobility needs, we are living in a constantly developing world.
This focus led into our third gathering, and the half-way point in our series. Many of the new solutions within public transport have proven reliable options, helping to improve the efficiency and resilience of public transport operations. The ‘Potential of Innovation’ focused on Singapore, Hong Kong, Shenzhen and Moscow and a conversation on how digitalisation can help to increase the attractiveness of public transport and the ways in which data-driven solutions can contribute to more efficient operational processes.
Sessions four and five focused on ‘Resilient Urban Mobility Systems’ and how to give a fresh momentum to a modal shift towards sustainable urban mobility, and ‘Urban Mobility Policy’ on how cities can take the lessons learnt during the pandemic into account when developing their urban planning strategies.
The pandemic has shown us how resilient public transport is. But it needs ongoing support and investment to make sure sustainable urban mobility options are what keeps our cities moving.
As we welcomed speakers from all over the world, including Austria, Belgium, China, France, Russia, Singapore, Spain and the UK, our numbers continued to grow and our positive messaging with it.
Our series covered the entire spectrum of public transport and we would like to thank all involved, the Department of Transport in Moscow, our speakers, and the audience, for making it a success.
The UITP Mobility Dialogue event will gather leaders, experts, and inspiring speakers in public transport from every corner of the globe, across different time zones over one day.
On 26 October 2021, the digital event will consist of numerous conference sessions focused on relaunching the public transport sector, lessons learnt from the pandemic and driving transformation in public transport.