Affordability of mobility in Austria
Original Language Title: Leistbare Mobilität: Determinanten, Effekte, Entwicklungen – Erarbeitung und Bewertung innovativer Strategieoptionen
Guaranteeing the affordability of personal mobility belongs to the priorities of the Austrian transport policy. However, the definition of the term "affordability" as well as its consequences for government action and the measures of transport providers is by far undifferentiated and
uninvestigated. The affordability of travel is by nature of considerable interest for the households in Austria, especially given for example the persistently high petrol prices and the likely further price increase for fossil energy sources, the discussion about and plans for introducing mobility pricing (e.g. distance-related tolls), the delayed but necessary energy efficiency revolution in motorized transport or the general uncertainties about the future development of households income Travel is an important consumer good and its affordability an essential prerequisite for societal and economic participation of all population groups and therefore for economic prosperity. Its affordability touches not only the sphere of private households, their consumption patterns and mobility chances, but also the relevant levels of fiscal, social and transport policy which shapes the organizational and financial framework of Austria's transport system.
COSTS provides a extensive analytical as well as policy-oriented representation of the affordability of mobility in Austria, including an investigation of the cost driving factors and their likely development. Based on future cost and consumption paths, transport policy and supply options are developed and economically assessed which will help to support an affordable mobility system with non-discriminatory
accessibility and as a precondition for prosperity.
The proposed study COSTS is dealing with these challenges and pursues the following overall objectives: (1) the deepening of the understanding of the current and future level of affordability of travel in Austria, (2) the development of strategic guidelines for transport policy and (public) transport providers and (3) proposing and evaluating innovative solutions of feasible and possibly inexpensive measures which follow the overall guidelines. To achieve these research and consultancy aims various social and economic research methods are applied, covering for example broad desk research activities to explore the fundamental knowledge base of affordability issues, the fusion and common statistical analysis of relevant micro-data sets from the consumption, income and travel behaviour side, the exemplary application of a macro-economic model to estimate consumption reactions mainly towards price increased of energy input and the exploration of experts? knowledge of the planned
steering committee which will follow and review the work done within the COSTS. The results of the methods to be applied will be collected and presented in a series of milestone reports.
The most important milestones aim at the representation and possible forecasts for the most important cost-driving factors (such as fuels) (MS 1.2/2.1), the analysis of the status-quo situation of household consumption towards mobility and possible reactions if mobility prices
will increase further (MS 3.1/3.2) as well as the transport-related and economic assessment of strategic policies and concrete planning measures aiming at the provision of an accessible, safe and affordable transport system for the private households and also for public budgets
(MS 4.1/4,2). The consortium expects that COSTS will help to qualify and quantify the term affordability of transport given the Austrian overall context. Furthermore, we strive for the formulation of options and measures for policy, planning and (public) transport providers.
Given the still immature operationalization of the term affordability within the set of transport planning objectives of the different state levels, this outcome shall be highly welcome and useful.
komobile w7 GmbH