Behavioural Change for Sustainable Urban Mobility


Pathfinder - explores relevant climate arenas to identify and prioritize innovation opportunities


Pan-European, co-ordinated from the Netherlands

January 2014

Province of Utrecht


Aart Kees Evers, Province of Utrecht


Making Transitions Happen

Province of Utrecht
ASTER, Bologna
Regionalmanagement Nordhessen GmbH
Stadt Kassel
Utrecht University
Institute for Sustainability, London

In the Behavioural Change for Sustainable Urban Mobility (BestMOB) project various innovative business models will be developed to reduce the negative effects of congestion, not only on the environment, but also on the economy and the lives of individuals. The public sector has limited means to achieve this. Private interests, however, could simultaneously drive and benefit from the transition to sustainable mobility systems.

European urban areas are often highly congested and traffic produces large amounts of greenhouse gas emissions. Next to negative environmental consequences, congestion also leads to economic effects as it reduces productivity, in terms of wasted time as well as stress and health implications. In the Netherlands alone congestion is estimated to cost the economy 1 billion Euros. Many private businesses are eager to overcome these issues and simultaneously improve their sustainability and productivity. Whilst previous projects have shown that improvements are possible, the costs, however, tend to be unevenly distributed, as they predominantly fall on the public sector, with financial resources that are under pressure. The engagement of the private sector, therefore, is crucial for their continuation.

Shifts in public behaviour suggest that awareness and willingness to make changes to commuter behaviour is growing. Increasingly the urban public favours usage over ownership, reflected in the rising trends of car and bike sharing, as well as pay as you go services. Also, an increasing array of smart apps and price comparison tools are available to travellers to manage their journeys in a way that both cuts costs and saves time.