The EPN Consulting Newsletter No. 096 - August 2018
Dear Colleague,

I have been working on ITS for 25 years and I have recently shared the enthusiasm for the Mobility as a Service (MaaS) concept, which should change our way of travelling by public transport in the near future.

A few weeks ago, though, one of my frequent travelling route made me think that MaaS cannot solve all problems if some basic organisational and planning activities are poor or entirely missing.

I had to travel from London to Turin but direct flight tickets were horribly expensive so I decided to fly to Milan Malpensa at a more reasonable price, then go to Turin by public transport. I knew every single item of the possible travelling solutions so I didn't need any MaaS app (which wouldn't be available, anyway).

I left the EPN Consulting office in London Victoria at 2:15pm to reach the London Victoria Coach station (10-min walk) and catch the 3pm coach to Luton airport. But, as often happens, the coach was 30-min delayed so I had to wait for 1 hour to get on the coach and reach Luton airport at 5pm.

The 6:30pm flight to Milan Malpensa was delayed by 40 mins due to the London air traffic control restriction and landed in Malpensa (Terminal 2) with a similar delay. Then I got on the bus to reach the non-Schengen destinations gate, queued up for the passport control and exited the airport at 10:04pm, just 4 mins after the departure of the coach to Turin.

I had to stay in Malpensa until midnight to get the next (and last) coach to Turin, which took the usual 2 hours to reach the city and eventually alighted me at 2:00am with no urban public transport service (someone came to collect me).

Summing up: the decision of travelling entirely by public transport from Central London to Central Turin via Milan (to save good money on the flight ticket) cost me 11 (eleven) hours on the go, which is unacceptable in the 21st century! Despite I knew by heart every transport solution, timetables, carriers to select, how to buy tickets, etc.

This made me think that an efficient MaaS could be possible and effective only if:
- flight routes are defined reasonably and priced accordingly. I have been flying for decades and I still don't understand why flights to/from Turin cost enormously more than those to Milan when the two cities are only 10-min fly away (this happens also with the same carrier, when available in both cities)
- no matter if air traffic control restrictions are in place or not, certain airlines are statistically often delayed
- coaches are a good and cheap travelling option but too dependent on road traffic conditions, so not reliable when one has to use them to travel to/from airports, unless is prepared to waste hours between waiting and travelling times
- coach/train timetables should be revised and integrated to ensure a satisfactory service. For example in London: National Express (coach) service to Luton is every 30 mins but often the waiting time is 50-60 mins due to road congestion. Similar aspect applies to Malpensa-Turin coach service: the last departures are 10pm, 12am then no service until 8am. As flights delays happen much more frequently then in the past due to strikes, weather conditions, skies congestion, etc. an extended service is now essential

All transport operators should not only join the MaaS club, but also be prepared to modify and update their service and fares to keep travelling by public transport appealing and economically convenient.

Feel free to send your comments to: 

LAST DAYS If you would like to join the EPN Consulting Network, until 31 August 2018 we offer 20% off  on the Annual Membership of any package.

EPN Consulting Ltd.
Founder, CEO
Twitter: @stefmai

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Horizon 2020 & other calls close to deadline

30 Aug 2018 - Deadline to submit proposals to the [ERC-2018-ADG] call (ERC Advanced Grant)

04 Sept 2018 - Deadline to submit proposals concerning  No.28 topics to several calls

06 Sept 2018 - Deadline to submit proposals to No.21 topic of the [H2020-BBI-JTI-2018] call (RIA, IA, CSA - Bio-Based Industries)

EPN Consulting is happy to help SMEs and any kind of organisations assess their project ideas, convert their ideas in robust and valuable proposals and manage the entire project cycle once the proposals are eligible for funding.

Get in touch for a FREE consultation.

Go to the Events Section
HERE Mobility: the "Google of the Mobility World" taking on Uber in Integrated Transport

19 July 2018 -  Walk down any residential street and almost every home will have a car parked outside. Maybe even two, three or more vehicles.

In the US, more than nine in ten households owns a vehicle of some description in a country where 85% of people drive to work every day - only 9% of those carpooling with someone else. 

At the end of March this year, there were 37.9 million registered vehicles in the UK - more than half the 65 million population.

So many people rely on having their own cars but one day, they might not be so necessary...

London set to become the World's most walkable city 

19 July 2018 - London's first ever walking and cycling commissioner, Will Norman, unveiled the capital's first Walking Action Plan. It set out how London will become a city where walking, for those that can, is the most obvious, enjoyable and attractive means of travel for all short trips. 

The plan, which is supported by Public Health England (PHE), has an ambitious vision to make London the most walkable city in the world, with a million extra walking trips taking place each day by 2024 (from 6.4 million end-to-end journeys in 2018 to 7.5 million end-to-end journeys in 2024). The Mayor of London wants to increase the proportion of people walking, cycling and taking public transport to 80% of journeys by 2041, from 63% now.

The Mayor is investing a record £2.2bn (€2.45bn) in streets across London to make them better for walking and cycling, and improve air quality.  

Read more
Lufthansa announced "Global Blockchain Challenge" for the Aviation industry

21 July 2018 -  Lufthansa Innovation Hub (LIH) and the SAP.iO Berlin Foundry teamed up to launch the first ever Aviation Blockchain Challenge worldwide. Announced in a blog, the challenge seeks to explore potential opportunities and drive adoption of Blockchain technology in the airline industry.

According to the reveal announcement, application of blockchain technology in finance currently dwarfs what is obtainable in the Travel and Mobility Tech scene. In order to change this, the challenge aims to attract the most talented blockchain entrepreneurs from all over the world and give them an enabling environment to create ideas and experiment with new ways of doing things.

EC Tender: Study on the Effects of Automation on Road User Behaviour and Performance

31 July 2018 -  The main objective of this study is to provide the Commission and other public authorities with insights on the effects that the deployment of driver assistance, partial and full automation will have on the behavior of all road users in traffic and, in particular for drivers of motor vehicles, and asses the consequences for EU legislation particularly concerning drivers training and licencing.

Deadline: 28 Sept 2018

Read more
EIC Fast Track to Innovation (FTI) to invest EUR 34m in 14 projects

08 Aug 2018 -  The European Commission will support 14 top-class projects to bring their innovations faster onto the market under the European Innovation Council (EIC) pilot.

Each project will receive around €2 million from the Fast Track to Innovation strand of the EIC pilot. The 14 projects involve 59 partners, including small and medium-sized companies, industrial partners, universities and non-profit organisations, from 18 countries. With this funding and extra business acceleration support, the projects will be able to finance their close-to-market innovation activities.

The next and last 2018 cut-off date is 23 Oct 2018.

Read more
To make Self-Driving Cars safe, we also need better Roads and Infrastructures

14 Aug 2018 - The big question around self-driving cars, for many people, is:
When will the technology be ready? In other words, when will autonomous vehicles be safe enough to operate on their own?

But there has been far less attention paid to two equally important questions: When will the driving environment be ready to accommodate self-driving cars? And where will this technology work best?

Driving requires a great deal of processing and decision making, which must be automated. On top of that, there are many unpredictable external factors that must be accounted for and, therefore, many ways in which the driving environment must change...

Read more
Upcoming Professional Events in Europe

05-06 Sept 2018 - Zuerich (CH) - HYDROPOWER DEVELOPMENT 2018

05-06 Sept 2018 - London (UK) - EUROPEAN SMART HOMES 2018

06-07 Sept 2018 - Bristol (UK) - CYCLING & SOCIETY Annual Symposium

12-13 Sept 2018 - Birmingham (UK) - RWM 2018 - Recycling and Waste Management

13-14 Sept 2018 - Lisbon (PT) - URBACT CITY FESTIVAL

17-21 Sept 2018 - Copenhagen (DK) - 25th ITS WORLD CONGRESS

The Website of the Month:  The EC INNOVATION RADAR
The Innovation Radar is a European Commission initiative to identify high potential innovations and innovators in EU-funded research and innovation projects. The goal is to allow every citizen, public official, professional and business person to discover the outputs of EU innovation funding and give them a chance to seek out innovators who could follow in the footsteps of companies such as Skype, TomTom, ARM Holdings, all of whom received EU funding in their early days.

By providing greater access to such information the aim is to encourage the development of a dynamic ecosystem of incubators, entrepreneurs, funding agencies and investors that can help get EU-funded innovations faster to market.

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