This presentation focusses on the role of AI in the governance of Mobility-as-a-Service (MaaS) with regards to sustainability. The presentation contributes a novel approach towards understanding the role of AI in governance processes through MaaS, and implications for social and environmental sustainability. It combines field work and a narrative literature review.
I use MaaS as a case study for mobility governance, as it is regarded as key innovation for sustainable mobility, with data and AI playing a central role. This presentation demonstrates how crucial it is that sustainability goals play a central role in the governance of MaaS, and how there is a real danger for sustainability to not be part of mobility systems.
Using MaaS as a point of departure, the presentation abstracts broader issues of AI in governance with regards to sustainable mobility futures. It demonstrates how the performativity and real-time dimension that algorithms add to governance requires co-creation and collaboration between developers, policymakers, citizens and algorithms to efficiently correspond to sustainability challenges. At the same time, it is crucial that objectives and values of algorithms are decided collectively by human private and public actors to ensure alignment of interests and public value.
Regarding the potential implications of governance with AI for public value and sustainability goals, the presentation shows that a balanced hybrid governance approach between policymakers, industry players and algorithms (as non-human actors) with explicit and dynamic feedback mechanisms is required, so that public and sustainability goals are ensured. This entails preventing governance from degenerating into algocracy (i.e., power lies with algorithms rather than with people) through transparency and democratic deliberation of sustainability objectives. To ensure public value, these objectives need to be tailored to local sustainability priorities and need to manage algorithmic biases that might result to social injustices related to algorithmic values and data representativeness as well as environmental concerns related to environmentally harmful data usage.
Overall, this presentation proposes a conceptualisation of the term hybrid governance that highlights the role of AI as actor, and captures how the interplay between human actors and AI algorithms in MaaS governance creates new accountabilities, opportunities, and risks for sustainability.
Dr. Eriketti Servou is PostDoc fellow from EuroTechPostDoc/ Marie Skłodowska-Curie Actions (MSCA) based in the Technology, Innovation and Society group at the Eindhoven University of Technology (TU/e). Eriketti is a transdisciplinary researcher with a background in the intersection of governance, socio-technical innovation, smart cities, digitalization, and sustainable mobility. She combines academic and practical experience (as an urban planner and smart cities consultant) from 5 different countries: Greece, Denmark, Germany, Scotland, and the Netherlands.