We sat down with Maria Stenström, Senior Manager of Mobility and Behavioral Changes, The Swedish 2030-Secretariat to find out her predictions for mobility in 2023.

The time of the frontrunner has come.

“ With disappointing negotiation results from the COP27 climate summit in Egypt and low expectations for this year’s summit in Dubai, the room and need for “coalitions of the willing” has increased. Many countries, pushed by the business sector and in some cases by court rulings, strive for climate leadership. This is not only true for countries like Sweden where the 2030-secretariat shows how climate leadership in the transport sector creates jobs and billions in business, but also the likes of Costa Rica, Bhutan and Ethiopia, where tough climate targets is seen as new opportunities to attract badly needed investments. This also puts more pressure on regional cooperation, exemplified by the EU, to allow and encourage two speed-solutions; the fastest members will be given more freedom to advance while the laggards will be allowed to move more at their own pace so as not to slow everyone else down.“

Peak transport is now here for real.

“ For several years, researchers and activists have proclaimed “peak car” and “peak mileage”, but it has not systematically happened until now. The covid pandemic taught the world how we can work, study and entertain ourselves remotely, and around the world fewer and fewer are accepting to commute to an office everyday just to do what can just as well be done at home or indeed anywhere. Ordering online also became the new normal during covid, and the habit of physically going to the shop for everything you might want is not coming back. Add that 3D-printing now truly works, that companies have become much more reluctant to have global supply chains and that we are entering a recession that will itself put a damper to traveling, and it is easy to see that peak car, peak mileage and peak transport is now here for real.“

Sharing is caring.

“ The reduced demand for transport combined with the economic downturn, means there will be less interest in physically owning a car. Even before the recent changes, it was on average unused 95 percent of the time, and the way for it to not inch further up towards 97-98 is to share the car with others – not necessarily car pooling in the old ways, but simply accepting that app-based services will give you an income from the car when you don’t need it, or find an unused vehicle in the vicinity when you need one. Almost all major innovations in the last few years have been about sharing – Spotify instead of owning records, 2030-secretariat partner Bolt instead of your own kick bike, co-working offices and home offices for start-ups instead of forking out meagre income on having your own office  – and this is just the beginning of the world where resources are shared, creating stronger links between users, additional needs for information to be shared and opportunities to reduce our carbon and resources footprint by leaving private ownership behind.“

Explore more predictions

You can explore more predictions from global thought leaders and visionaries who are shaping the future of mobility, liveable cities and sustainable Transport in our Global Thought Leaders Predictions for Mobility 2023 report.