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EU Position

Digital transformation in public transport: EU project analysing impact on jobs, competences and working conditions

  • Europe
  • automation
  • Employment
  • Future of Mobility
  • Performance management
  • Staff

Digitalisation: A major trend in business and every day life

In the urban public transport sector, the adoption of new digital technologies and processes is ongoing and has been accelerated following the COVID-19 crisis. These developments can be noticed in all aspects transport, from infrastructure and vehicles to customer relations and the development of new digital-based services and business areas. Digitalisation offers opportunities to shape the future of urban mobility by better responding to customer expectations. These developments have however also a significant impact on employment, skill and competence needs and working conditions.

Digital transportation and social dialogue in urban public transport

UITP and ETF, the European social partners, have been working on this topic for many years within the European Social Dialogue and have initiated a research project in 2019 with the financial support of the European Commission, DG EMPL. The final report of the European project, Digital transformation and social dialogue in urban public transport, analyses the impact of digital transformation on jobs, working conditions and competences in the urban public transport sector. The report focuses on four areas for deeper analysis:

  • Operations
  • Maintenance
  • HR Management and work organisation
  • Customer services, including the development of Mobility as a Service (MaaS).

Now, we have a better understanding of the technological developments taking place in the sector, and their impacts on employment, working conditions and competences.

The main findings point to the importance of an inclusive and participatory approach within the social partnership from the very beginning to better anticipate, prepare and manage digital transformation. The process should guarantee a just transition and make sure that nobody is left behind.

Besides opportunities to increase efficiency and improve service quality, as well as open up new services and revenue streams, digitalisation also brings a number of challenges which need to be taken into account. Among others, these are related to customers’ digital abilities, cybersecurity and data control.

Digitalisation has the potential to strengthen the position of public transport as the backbone of urban mobility and make public transport fit for the future. The role of urban public transport, as a key provider of services, should remain in the public interest and guarantee universal access for all kinds of users.

The results of the report will be presented at the final conference of the project taking place on 15 October 9.00-13.30 online. You can find more information about the conference here

Interested in this topic and want to learn more? Check out what our Business and HR Management Committee are working on! 

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