Read “Transportation Research Circular: U.S. Department of Transportation’s Mobility on Demand Initiative” by Susan Shaheen, PhD, Adam Cohen, and Elliot Martin, PhD.

The market for personal mobility is changing rapidly due to shifting social and cultural trends, as well as technological advances such as smartphones, information processing, and widespread data connectivity. Mobility on Demand (MOD) is an innovative transportation concept. On the supply side, transportation providers manage mobility rather than traffic through demand-responsive service, shifting use to alternate modes. On the demand side, mobility consumers reserve, dispatch, or use innovative mobility, public transportation, and goods delivery strategies in place of privately owned vehicles. The most-advanced forms of MOD incorporate trip planning and booking, real-time information, and fare payment into a single-user interface. Modes facilitated through MOD providers can include carsharing, bikesharing, ridesharing, ridesourcing, or transportation network companies (TNCs), scooter sharing, microtransit, shuttle services, public transportation, and other emerging transportation solutions.

Listen to “The Mobility Podcast” with Susan A. Shaheen, as she discusses the recent report: “Travel Behavior: Shared Mobility and Transportation Equity.”  This episode was recorded live at the Next Urbanism Conference, in Portland, OR.

Read “Future of Mobility White Paper” as part of CALTRANS California Transportation Plan 2050, by Susan Shaheen, PhD, Hannah Totte, and Adam Stocker.

Transportation is arguably experiencing its most transformative revolution since the introduction of the automobile. Concerns over climate change and equity are converging with dramatic technological advances. Although these changes – including shared mobility and automation – are rapidly altering the mobility landscape, predictions about the future of transportation are complex, nuanced, and widely debated. California is required by law to renew the California Transportation Plan (CTP), updating its models and policy considerations to reflect industry changes every five years. This document is envisioned as a reference for modelers and decision makers. We aggregate current information and research on the state of key trends and emerging technologies/services, documented impacts on California’s transportation ecosystem, and future growth projections (as appropriate).

Read “Mobility on Demand: Operational Concept Report” by Susan Shaheen, PhD, Adam Cohen, Balaji Yelchuru, and Sara Sarkhili.

This operational concept report provides an overview of the Mobility on Demand (MOD) concept and its evolution, description of the MOD ecosystem in a supply and demand framework, and its stakeholders and enablers. Leveraging the MOD ecosystem framework, this report reviews the key enablers of the system including business models and partnerships, land use and different urbanization scenarios, social equity and environmental justice, policies and standards, and enabling technologies. This review is mostly focused on the more recent forms of MOD (e.g., shared mobility).

Read “Travel Behavior: Shared Mobility and Transportation Equity” by Susan Shaheen, PhD, Corwin Bell, Adam Cohen, and Balaji Yelchuru.

Shared mobility—the shared use of a motor vehicle, bicycle, or other low-speed transportation mode that allows users to obtain short-term access to transportation on an as-needed basis—has the potential to help address some transportation equity challenges. In an effort to categorize the myriad of transportation equity barriers facing transportation system users, this primer proposes a ‘STEPS to Transportation Equity’ framework including: Spatial, Temporal, Economic, Physiological, and Social barriers. For each barrier category, shared mobility opportunities and challenges are explored along with policy recommendations.

Read “Shared Mobility: Current Practices and Guiding Principles” by Susan Shaheen, PhD, Adam Cohen, and Ismail Zohdy.


This primer provides an introduction and background to shared mobility; discusses the government’s role; reviews success stories; examines challenges, lessons learned, and proposed solutions; and concludes with guiding principles for public agencies. The primer provides an overview of current practices in this emerging field, and it also looks toward the future in the evolution and development of shared mobility.

Two-page Overiew

Glossary of Shared Mobility Terms





Read “Mobile Apps and Transportation: A Review of Smartphone Apps and a Study of User Response to Multimodal Traveler Information” by Susan Shaheen, PhD, Elliot Martin, PhD, Adam Cohen, Apoorva Musunuri, and Abhinav Bhattacharyya.

In recent years, technological and social forces have pushed smartphone applications (apps) from the fringe to the mainstream. Understanding the role of transportation apps in urban mobility is important for policy development and transportation planners. This study evaluates the role and impact of multimodal aggregators from a variety of perspectives, including a literature review; a review of the most innovative, disruptive, and highest-rated transportation apps; interviews with experts in the industry, and a user survey of former multimodal aggregator RideScout
users. Between February and April 2016, researchers conducted interviews with experts to gain a stronger understanding about challenges and benefits of data sharing between private companies and public agencies. Key findings from the expert interviews include the critical need to protect user privacy; the potential to use data sharing to address integrated corridor and congestion management as well as various pricing strategies during peak hours; along with the potential benefits for improving coordination between the public and private sectors. In March 2016, researchers surveyed 130 people who had downloaded the RideScout app to evaluate attitudes and perceptions toward mobile apps,
travel behavior, and modal shift. The goal was to enhance understanding of how the multimodal apps were impacting the transportation behavior. The survey did found that respondents used multimodal apps in ways that yielded travel that was less energy intensive and more supportive of public transit. Looking to the future, smartphone applications and more specifically multimodal aggregators, may offer the potential for transportation planners and policymakers to enhance their understanding of multimodal travel behavior, share data, enhance collaboration, and identify opportunities for public-private partnerships.


Read “Smartphone Applications to Influence Travel Choices: Practices and Policies” by Susan Shaheen, PhD, Adam Cohen, Ismail Zohdy, and Beaudry Kock.


This primer provides an overview of current practices in this emerging field and looks toward the future in the evolution and development of smartphone applications for the transportation sector. The primer provides an introduction and overview smartphone applications (known as “apps”); discusses the background, evolution, and development of smartphone apps; reviews the types of smartphone applications promoting transportation efficiency and congestion reduction; discusses transportation apps and their impacts on traveler behavior; examines current challenges; and concludes with guiding principles for public agencies.

Two-page Overview



Read “Shared Mobility: Definitions, Industry Developments, and Early Understanding” by Susan Shaheen, PhD, Nelson Chan, Apaar Bansal, and Adam Cohen.


This white paper includes an introduction and background to different types of shared modes, as well as smartphone-based trip planning apps that can facilitate access to public transit and shared mobility services. This paper also notes where potential benefits of shared mobility could align with the new mission of the California Department of Transportation (Caltrans), which is to “Provide a safe, sustainable, integrated, and efficient transportation system to enhance California’s economy and livability.” We conclude the paper with a summary and provide an appendix with a glossary of terms and a list of the shared mobility models, including a range of companies in each sector.

Read “Shared Mobility: Retrospective from Caltrans Shared Mobility Workshop” by Susan Shaheen, PhD, Adam Stocker, and Apaar Bansal.


On September 8, 2015, UC Berkeley’s Transportation Sustainability Research Center (TSRC), in partnership with the California Department of Transportation (Caltrans), hosted “Shared Mobility: A Sustainability and Technologies Workshop” at the UC Davis Conference Center. The workshop facilitated a dialogue among nearly 100 participants representing 28 organizations. There were 61 attendees from Caltrans, with 38 from Headquarters and 23 from various district offices. Caltrans employee attendees included planners, engineers, researchers, managers, and directors. In addition, nine participants were from the private sector and included individuals from shared mobility companies. There were 27 participants from other public agencies and universities.


This synopsis covers findings and discussions from the conference, and it summarizes the key topics explored throughout the day. The report starts off with recaps of the workshop introductions from Professor Susan Shaheen of UC Berkeley, Steve Cliff of Caltrans, and Socorro “Coco” Briseno of Caltrans. Next, the two expert panels are discussed in detail, touching upon key points made by each panel member and moderator. The breakout sessions are then covered, and the discussions regarding the impacts of shared mobility and on Caltrans planning and operations are reviewed. Finally, a conclusion summarizes the overall findings and key takeaways from the workshop.

Read “Shared-Use Mobility Summit: Retrospective from North America’s first gathering on shared-use mobility” by Susan Shaheen, PhD, and Matt Christensen.


Shared-use mobilitythe shared use of a vehicle, bicycle or other low-speed modeis an innovative transportation solution that enables users to have short-term access to a transportation mode. In North America, shared-use mobility encompasses the submarkets of carsharing, bikesharing, ridesharing, on-demand ride services, scooter sharing, shuttle services, and other emerging industries. In October 2013, the University of California, Berkeley’s Transportation Sustainability Research Center (TSRC) hosted the inaugural Shared-Use Mobility Summit in San Francisco, California. The summit was a two-day event that facilitated a dialogue among nearly 300 participants representing close to 200 organizations. Participants included mobility providers, policymakers, governmental agencies, non-profits, technologists, academics, media, other stakeholders, and affiliated industries. One hundred and five (105) private companies attended the summit, and 62 governmental agencies were represented at the summit. Additionally, 44 academics from 17 universities participated. Of the 194 organizations represented, 26 were affiliated with carsharing, 16 with bikesharing, and 6 were associated with ridesharing and ondemand ride services or transportation network companies (TNCs).

Read “Disrupting Mobility: Impacts of Sharing Economy and Innovative Transportation on Cities,” edited by Susan Shaheen, PhD, and Gereon Meyer. 

This book explores the opportunities and challenges of the sharing economy and innovative transportation technologies with regard to urban mobility. Written by government experts, social scientists, technologists and city planners from North America, Europe and Australia, the papers in this book address the impacts of demographic, societal and economic trends and the fundamental changes arising from the increasing automation and connectivity of vehicles, smart communication technologies, multimodal transit services, and urban design.

Read “Planning for Shared Mobility” by Susan Shaheen, PhD, and Adam Cohen.

In recent years, economic, environmental, and social forces have quickly given rise to the “sharing economy,” a collective of entrepreneurs and consumers leveraging technology to share resources, save money, and generate capital. Homesharing services, such as Airbnb, and peer-to-peer carsharing services, such as Getaround, have become part of a sociodemographic trend that has pushed the sharing economy from the fringe and more to the mainstream. The role of shared mobility in the broader landscape of urban mobility has become a frequent topic of discussion. Major shared transportation modes—such as bikesharing, carsharing, ridesourcing, and alternative transit services—are changing how people travel and are having a transformative effect on mobility and local planning.

Executive Summary

Read “Mobility and the Sharing Economy: Impacts Synopsis” by Susan Shaheen, PhD, and Nelson Chan.


Shared Mobility – the shared use of a vehicle, bicycle, or other low-speed mode – is an innovativetransportation solution that enables users to have short-term access to transportation modes on an “as-needed” basis. Shared mobility includes carsharing, personal vehicle sharing (or peer-to-peer (P2P) carsharing), bikesharing, scooter sharing, shuttle services, ridesharing, and on-demand ride services. It can also include commercial delivery vehicles providing flexible goods movement. Shared mobility has had a transformative impact on many global cities by enhancing transportation accessibility while simultaneously reducing ownership of personal automobiles. In the context of carsharing and bikesharing, vehicles and bicycles are typically unattended, concentrated in a network of locations where the transaction of checking out a vehicle or bicycles is facilitated through information technology (IT) and other technological innovations. Usually, carsharing and bikesharing operators are responsible for the cost of maintenance, storage, parking, and insurance/fuel (if applicable). In the context of classic ridesharing (carpooling and vanpooling) and on-demand ride services, such as transportation network companies (TNCs), many of these providers employ IT to facilitate the matching of riders and drivers for trip making.



Read “Shared Mobility: Current Practices and Guiding Principles – Glossary” by Susan Shaheen, PhD, and Adam Cohen.


Includes definitions for: Alternative Transit Services, Bikesharing, Carpooling, Car Rental, Carsharing, Closed-Campus Bikesharing, Courier Network Services, E-Hail Apps, High-Tech Company Shuttles, Fixed Route and Fixed Schedule Microtransit, Flexible Route and On-Demand Schedule Microtransit, Flexible Transit Services, Fractional Ownership, Hybrid Peer-to-Peer, Limousines and Liveries, Microtransit, One-Way Carsharing, Paired On-Demand Passenger Ride and Courier Services, Pedicabs, Peer-to-Peer Access Model, Peer-to-Peer Carsharing, Peer-to-Peer Marketplace, Personal Vehicle Sharing, Public Transportation, Peer-to-Peer Bikesharing, Transportation Network Company/Ridesourcing, Ride-Hailing, Ridesplitting, Rountrip Carsharing, Scooter Sharing, Slugging, Taxis, and Vanpooling.


Explore IMR’s YouTube Channel, with keynote addresses, panel discussions, and other academic and industry gatherings.