• Xavier Bach Coma (Institut d’Estudis Regionals i Metropolitans de Barcelona)
  • Oriol Marquet (Grup d’Estudis en Mobilitat, Transport i Territori)
  • Carme Miralles-Guasch (Grup d’Estudis en Mobilitat, Transport i Territori)

Any: 2023

Moped-style scooter sharing services (MSS) offer short-period renting for daily urban mobility and are gaining popularity in cities worldwide. MSS provide substantial promise in reducing car-dependency and helping sustainability goals, but also significant risks in terms of spatial access equity and social justice. In recent years, European cities have been testing different regulation strategies for MSS but not always succeeding regarding social equity and spatial accessibility criteria.

In this context, this study employs a semi-structured interviewing approach to discuss the main existing MSS regulation models. The aim is to understand how experts, policymakers, and private operators assess the strengths and weaknesses of each model to guarantee spatial and social equity regarding accessibility to the service, while preserving the long-term economic interests of private operators.

Our results show a diversity of opinions, with solid consensus on proposing an alternative to the Barcelona regulatory model (capped vehicle licenses, uncapped number of operators), ranging from a numerus clausus model (Paris or Amsterdam) to a laissez-faire model (Madrid or Berlin), based on an open dialogue between administrations and the private sector. However, most respondents noted that the natural path of the regulation (as has happened in the past with other transport innovations) is towards a close public-private partnership model, with greater management and control capacity by the public sector. This option generates the greatest consensus of favouring a more spatial and socially equitable service while preserving its economic viability, although it would involve significant commitment and investment of the public sector. These findings provide valuable feedback for policymakers and transport regulators on how to approach micromobility and MSS regulatio

Bach Coma, X., Marquet, O.., & Miralles-Guasch, C. (2023). Assessing social and spatial access equity in regulatory frameworks for moped-style scooter sharing services. Transport Policy, Volume 132, doi: 10.1016/j.tranpol.2023.01.002