The Project

About

The acceptance of Cooperative, Connected and Automated Mobility (CCAM) solutions by citizens and future users is an element of strong interest for all stakeholders involved in the autonomous and connected vehicle sector as well as other (non-vehicle) connected services.

SINFONICA is developing efficient and innovative strategies to engage citizens, assess the current situation on CCAM deployments, collect data from 4 different context and user groups (the Groups of Interest), elaborate these data using data and people analytics with the help of Social Sciences and Humanities (SSH) to develop knowledge maps and share all the knowledge defined, created, and organized within the Project, through innovative tools and useful guidelines and recommendations towards capacity building for decision makers. All the above has the overall objective of fostering inclusive CCAM deployments, based on user needs.

The Project follows an overall bottom-up approach to capture the mobility needs of European citizens, with special attention to the needs of vulnerable users and under-researched groups. Different segments of society will be represented and directly engaged in a participative process. This will contribute to the development of a wide inventory of knowledge organized in the form of knowledge maps.

Finally, SINFONICA will create an innovative tool – the Knowledge Map Explorer – able to exploit the knowledge by providing practical guidelines and long-term recommendations to ensure that CCAM solutions meet social inclusion criteria.

The overall SINFONICA concept

Objectives:

SINFONICA will build on 4 pillars, which define the strategic objectives:

  • SO1: Create a strong knowledge base, mapping user needs and requirements, especially for vulnerable users, for an inclusive CCAM transport system.

  • SO2: Enable stakeholders to take informed decisions for social inclusive CCAM transport systems depending on their specific context.

  • SO3: Define a participatory framework to involve and engage citizens and relevant stakeholders in the design and creation of inclusive CCAM transport system.

  • SO4: Provide recommendations and guidelines for social innovative, citizen-oriented CCAM long term planning and large scale demonstrations in cities and regions.

Knowledge map explorer

Data and information collected – together with the methodologies and strategies defined in SINFONICA – will be rephrased through the creation of technical knowledge maps. Starting from these knowledge maps, the Consortium will develop the Knowledge Map Explorer: an interactive tool to deliver tailored information, based on the profile of the user consulting it (industries actors, road operators, public administrations, researchers, academia, and stakeholders interested to the CCAM domain and its societal aspects). The Knowledge Map Explorer will be an intelligent user-friendly navigation system: depending on the type of user doing the research, the system will offer what is most appropriate for its specific need. The tool will propose guidelines and recommendation for the implementation of CCAM solutions, specifically indicated to be truly inclusive, equitable, efficient, and accessible according to each specific context.

Groups of Interest

The SINFONICA Groups of Interest (GoIs) are Living Labs where the project activities will be implemented to enact the developed methodology and co-creation processes with the stakeholders.

The specific working groups emerged around four territories: the cities of Trikala and Hamburg, the province of Noord-Brabant, and the metropolitan area of West Midlands. Each of these GoIs will be composed of representatives of public administrations, associations of vulnerable users, citizens and various stakeholders. The GoIs will be created according to methodologies that will allow to properly include the representative of all the identified categories. It is important to underline that all the activities happening in the GoI will be guided by an evaluation process that will allow understanding the correctness of the scientific research. The territories have been selected in order to guarantee different perspectives and points of view at the geographical level, at the level of digital advancement, at the level of experience and interactions with the CCAMs.

Greece
TRIKALA, GREECE
The priority of this Group of Interest related to the CCAM is to collaborate with vulnerable users and all the mobility stakeholders to understand their needs, desires and concerns, to imagine a concrete and practical CCAM solution.
Netherlands
NOORD-BRABANT, NETHERLANDS
The Noord-Brabant Group of Interest focus in the Project will be related to different vulnerable groups and the existing lack of transport options that hinder participation in society in the more rural parts of the provence.
800px-Flag_of_the_United_Kingdom_(3-2_aspect_ratio).svg
WEST MIDLANDS, UNITED KINGDOM
A key interest is to understand how to turn small CCAM scale pilots into sustainable, viable services going forwards. It will be interesting to understand how demonstrations can ensure a starting point for real, long-term implementations.
Germany
HAMBURG, GERMANY
This Group of Interest will be particularly careful on involving all the relevant stakeholders in CCAM Process. To identify and collect the citizens needs for a certain service, the digital participation tool DIPAS will be used.

Methodology

Establishment of Groups of Interest
Initially, SINFONICA will collect and analyze from the available knowledge and experiences the mobility needs of different vulnerable groups, create a common vocabulary for CCAM solutions and collect needs and requirements of relevant CCAM stakeholders. Then a theoretical assessment of the current CCAM solutions and deployments will be conducted by comparing them with the mobility needs and the requirements and vision of stakeholders. Each Group of Interest will address the specific focus defined for its research related to the CCAM solutions. Since it is not possible to find all the needs, desires, and expectations related to CCAM without a more specific focus, SINFONICA has decided to discover all the users' and stakeholders' opinions related to CCAM and public transport.
Creation of methodologies
Based on a preliminary strategy developed by the experts within SINFONICA, the Consortium will work with the Groups of Interest to co-define the most appropriate engagement and data collection strategies. These activities will result in a co-definition process that will reflect the needs, and the characteristics of all the categories identified as targets. An overall strategy for data collection will be devised and agreed with the GoIs for their direct engagement, contribution, and active participation. The data collection process will however strongly count on the involvement of the other realities supporting SINFONICA (the groups of followers) to enrich and validate the outcomes progressively achieved.
Participatory approach implementation
The strategies and methods defined in phase 2 will be effectively applied and tested with the Groups of Interest in their territories, to investigate the citizens mobility needs and future users’ expectations, concerns, and desired towards CCAM. During this phase, the SINFONICA team will constantly be monitoring the engagement and data collection process, to evaluate the success of the strategy and methods implemented and eventually optimize them, if necessary. The process of this task will temporarily intersect with Phase 2 as follows: a) Definition of the Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) to be monitored; b) Implementation of engagement and information collection strategies in the GoIs; c) Periodic checks of trends to adjust the strategies.
Information Analysis
Information collected through SINFONICA will be analyzed not only with usual statistical inference methods and models but also with the involvement of SSH experts that will allow the definition of equity practices, equity indicators, limits and possibilities of CCAM solutions in terms of inclusiveness. This analysis will feed the knowledge maps creation and the extraction of knowledge for stakeholders via rule-based ontological reasoning mechanism of the SINFONICA inventory of knowledge. To understand how user requirements or accessibility targets affect the operational performance (and business case considerations linked to it), a state-of-the-art on-demand mobility assessment framework based on multi-agent simulation will be extended to consider those elements. For the test cases, representative demand data sets in terms of city-wide requests will be developed, which can then be tested against state-of-the-art fleet dispatching algorithms modified to incorporate user constraints. A comprehensive set of operational KPIs will be derived from simulation results to monitor and evaluate the effectiveness and the operativity of the activities. Hence, a scaled-up analysis from the individual user perspective to system-level dynamics is performed.
Tools development
The data and knowledge collected during the co-creation activities implemented with the Groups of Interest will form a knowledge base that will be articulated and organized into an inventory that will lead to the definition of technical knowledge maps. These will form the basis for the creation of the dataset to be consulted through the Knowledge Map Explorer. In fact, in this phase this innovative tool will be developed, in order to make the knowledge inventory – developed throughout the Project – available for a wide dissemination and appropriate exploitation of the outputs obtained.
Guidelines and recommendations
In addition to the Groups of Interest, SINFONICA foreseen the participation of the Groups of Followers which will be constituted by all those stakeholders (public authorities, associations, industries, researchers) that are involved or interested in the CCAM solutions. The recommendations that will be defined through SINFONICA are related to: a) The long-term period: when considering CCAM solutions sustainable and efficient in the long term, it is essential to have a wide view of the cities and citizens' needs and expectations. b) Communication with future users and citizens: doing innovative solutions is useless if there is not the right methodology that guides the communication with citizens and stakeholders. For this reason, SINFONICA will collaborate with different disciplines (i.e. psychology, communication science and marketing) that will allow defining a set of strategies to successfully communicate with future users/citizens. c) Large-scale demonstration projects starting from the results of a co-creation process.