Plenary sessions stand out as vital components of the 30th ITS World Congress High-Level Programme, exploring strategic and substantive advancements in ITS and mobility sector. These sessions feature influential panellists and keynote speakers, uniting experts across the ITS ecosystem to delve into key Congress themes. In 2024 ITS World Congress in Dubai, three plenary topics will vividly embody the overarching theme of ‘Mobility Driven by ITS.
It has been said that a chain is only as strong as its weakest link. The increasing interconnectedness of the mobility technologies, infrastructure, transport modes, and stakeholders delivers many advantages in terms of efficiency and convenience. However, each individual element also brings with it potential safety and security risks.
Physical safety of vulnerable road users, infrastructure, and vehicles must, in our increasingly digital world, be accompanied by measures to enhance cybersecurity and inspire trust. In our current era of natural and humancaused catastrophes, transport system resilience must factor in disaster recovery strategies. A robust and sustainable transport and mobility system must take a comprehensive and holistic approach to the issues of safety, cyber security, and disaster preparedness.
This Plenary will consider the different links in the mobility chain, including the role of artificial intelligence, as means to improve the safety and resilience of our transport systems. How can we harness and integrate necessary core elements to ensure a safe, trustworthy and resilient transport and mobility system? What are the tools, standards, and regulations that need to be developed or reinforced for ITS to serve our needs in a fast-changing world? Can AI help to solidify the mobility chain, or will it leave it more vulnerable? What are the diverse needs in different regions around the globe for transport safety and resilience? How is ITS fulfilling such needs?
In the host city of Dubai autonomous drones delivering medical supplies, smart ports streamlining trade, and an
efficient metro rail system bear witness to the overarching theme of this Congress, Mobility Driven by ITS. ITS has
evolved beyond roadways and has encompassed maritime, aviation, and rail. From smart ports optimizing cargo
operations to automated drones and delivery robots revolutionizing transport networks, cutting edge technological advancements are reshaping the more traditional movement of people and goods, and enabling new use cases.
Even as Urban Air Mobility is generating much excitement by promising a new dimension of transportation, digitalisation is creating tremendous possibilities by enabling the interconnectedness of transport modes to offer seamless mobility solutions for efficiency and a more sustainable future.
This Plenary will discuss some of the hallmarks of innovation in ITS as its scope expands beyond the road. The discussion will elaborate on balancing the development of new tools in a single transport mode with focusing on fully integrated cross-sectorial solutions across all modes. What are the hurdles in establishing this new ecosystem where new mobility modes are seamlessly integrated? How strong is the need to align regulatory environments among different modes to enable more integration, and deliver more social, environmental, and economic benefits? Is there a difference in the level of integration prioritised by various regions around the globe?
In the pursuit of smart and sustainable cities, ITS stands as a linchpin for transformative urban development. Smart cities harness ITS to create seamless, efficient, and environmentally friendly transportation systems that optimize traffic flow, reduce congestion, lower emissions, and enhance overall urban sustainability.
There is no single formula for becoming a smart city: Megacities’ approaches differ from those of mid-sized cities. In their transformation, regions around the world may assign different weight to issues such as mitigation of climate change, equity, inclusiveness, affordability, or financial investment.
This Plenary will focus on sharing views on priorities, best practices, evidence of outcomes and lessons learned from different cities around the world, including the public as well as the private sector, from political decisions to concrete change and solutions. It will discuss experiences from pioneer cities and communities that can be widely applied to drive the shift towards smart and sustainable cities.
Mobility transition towards smart cities comes with a price tag. But what is the price for society if we refrain from necessary investments? How can we accelerate the transition to smart cities and communities by involving citizens through co-creation and education about ITS? How can solutions for smart cities be transferred around the world? What are the minimal requirements for cities to move forward towards sustainable and intelligent mobility?