Giving voice to end-users’ needs in designing new transport systems

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Trilateral Research |

Date: 15 April 2020

Trilateral Research joins 11 organisations from across Europe in the newly launched H2020 TRIPS project. The ambition of the project is to take practical steps to address and pre-empt discrimination against disabled citizens and all people who experience barriers and challenges in using urban transport.

“You only need empathy in design, if you have excluded the people you claim to have empathy for.”
– Liz Jackson, Founder of The Disabled List

By ratifying the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, the EU and all Member States are committed to respecting the rights of people with disabilities, including the right to mobility and independent living. In practice, however, these rights have yet to materialise for disabled people in large parts of the EU, and today’s transport systems remain largely inaccessible.

As a consequence, people are disabled from accessing job opportunities, education, social and leisure activities and other services. This limits lifestyle choices, reinforces exclusion from local communities and ultimately blocks people from participating in society as full and independent citizens.

TRIPS consortium

The TRIPS project proposes a co-design approach that allows people, “disabled” by inaccessible environments, to take the leading role in designing accessible and useable transport systems. By focusing on the experience and the needs of disabled people, we aim to directly address a wide variety of barriers in current urban transport systems. This includes barriers due, for example, to age, health, or language.

TRIPS will provide case studies that show how such co-designed mobility solutions can indeed provide inclusive urban transport-for-all in seven example European cities. We will work with local partners in the transport ecosystem (City of Zagreb, CTM SPA, CARRIS, SRM Reti e Mobilità) to develop and test methods and mobility solutions in the cities of Bologna, Brussels, Cagliari, Lisbon, Sofia, Stockholm and Zagreb.

The consortium brings together organisations for

  • disability (European Network on Independent Living)
  • transport (International Association of Public Transport)
  • accessibility and assistive technologies (Association for the Development of Assistive Technology in Europe)
  • design (Eindhoven University of Technology)
  • partners with expertise in strategy and change management (T Bridge)
  • strategic technology development and user-centred design (German Aerospace Center)
  • policy and regulatory advice on technologies (Trilateral Research)

Trilateral is responsible for the technical coordination of the TRIPS project as well as for developing a Mobility Divide Index (MDI) that takes into account users’ requirements around mobility obstacles and a list of potential inclusive mobility solutions agreed between international networks of transport operators, technology suppliers and disabled users.

The TRIPS project has already been showcased in Zagreb as part of the “Quadruple Helix approach to social innovation ‒ a key to success” event organised by the European Commission and the European Committee of the Regions in association with the City of Zagreb.

For more information on this research area please contact our team.

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