Encouraging a SWITCH from car-based to active mobility using personalized information and communication technology approaches
The SWITCH project focused on promoting walking and cycling as important alternatives to car use especially for short urban journeys. It used behaviour change approaches to encourage people to switch to active modes as the basis for healthy, environmental friendly multimodal travel behaviour.
Although the infrastructure of alternative modes (conditions for walking and cycling) improved significantly in recent years, the share of car trips for short urban journeys is still high. According to EU report Cycling, the way ahead for towns and cities, more than 30% of trips made in Europe covers distances of less than 3km and 50% are less than 5 km. People seem to ignore active modes even if these are reasonable alternatives to car trips.
The SWITCH project intended to bridge the gap between potential and current mobility behaviour. It borught together five experienced cities Antwerp, Gdansk, London, Donostia- San Sebastián and Vienna, which combined and locally adapted approaches and developed them into their SWITCH campaigns.
SWITCH’s innovation came from the combination of tried and tested behaviour changes approaches and their application to specific target groups on a large scale. The added value of SWITCH lay in the combination of a common strategy based on experiences and locally-adapted campaigns. Hence, SWITCH was based on personalised travel planning using arguments for public health and mobility campaigning, and the use of one or more ICT solution as well as local approaches. This mix intended to carefully address the needs of the target groups. All SWITCH campaigns were applied to people in a period of life change.
We were expert partner (mobility campaigning); responsible for take-up and knowledge transfer with follower cities; main author of the SWITCH campaign guide and toolbox; transferability analysis; measures for quality assurance at all campaign stages; support to implementation cities; communication and dissemination tasks.