The mobility sector plays a crucial role in the lives of individuals and communities and has a high capacity for innovation, with significant transformations evident in recent years. Understanding the specific solutions required and user demands firsthand is key to providing services and developing relevant technologies. Last 5 July, over 50 people participated in the SHOW Ideathon organised by our partners from SURAAA in see:PORT, in Pörtschach (Austria), to delve into the main mobility challenges and the users’ needs. The heterogeneous group of attendants, featuring experts and interested citizens and users of different ages and walks of life, brought an inclusive vision of the steps towards safer and more efficient mobility. 

“Mobility is one of the greatest challenges of the present and the future. There is no lack of ideas, but of solutions that can also be implemented quickly”, says Peter Zenkl, Department 7 of the Office of the Carinthian Provincial Government. Walter Prutej, a thought leader in the field of mobility and the project manager of SURAAA (Smart Urban Region Austria Alps Adriatic), highlighted the significance of this competition, emphasizing that “Mobility has transcended mere transportation from point A to B. It now encompasses the broader concept of seamlessly navigating from one place to another. Mobility’s influence extends to all aspects of our daily lives and moving forward, the innovative essence of ideas will be paramount.”

During the ideathon, nine teams worked on the following challenges, linked to public transport and urban mobility: 

  • How can public transport be combined with autonomous, demand-oriented services? 
  • How should autonomous shuttle systems be designed to enable contactless use (via app) without touching, e.g. with monitors, voice outputs or sensors? 
  • How to combine the transport of people and small goods (small parcels and goods), and optimize the use of vehicles (avoid empty runs and empty buses)?

Three teams, one per challenge, were awarded a cash price of 500 euros: Challenge 1:App2anywhere (Carolina Petschnig, Christof Müller, Guntram Hallegger, Jürgen Holzbauer, Peter Zenkl), Challenge 2: Shuttle Bots (Hector Perez-Villeda, Ozioma Ozogau, Timotheus Zankl, Gordana Krstic), and Challenge 3: Kings of Combination (Gaby Sailer, Johann Rabitsch, Luca Wiesner, Gerald Miklin)