On October 8 and 9, Stadslab EIndhoven organized a Mobility Hackathon. Several teams participated, including the team Mobycon and Friends with Michael Dyblie, Pierre Kidzié, Anna Tailliez, Nieve Greene and Robbie Willems.
The hackathon spanned a Saturday and Sunday in which each team tackled one of the five challenges. At the end of the hackathon, each team presented their solution and the judges announced three winners.
Dive into a shared mobility issue for two days with a team of international colleagues. Robbie was enthusiastic to participate in this. How that went and whether the team took off with a prize, he tells here together with teammate Nieve.
“My mentor Koen told me about the Hackathon,” Robbie says. “I thought it would be a fun event and the fact that we would be working with an international team really appealed to me. In addition, I have experience working on shared mobility at the municipality of ‘s-Hertogenbosch, so the subject is right up my alley.”
Nieve Greene was on the team with Robbie and three others. Nieve is doing an internship at Mobycon in Delft as part of her Master’s degree in Human Geography at Lund University in Sweden.
Nieve: “I have never participated in a hackathon before, it seemed like a nice experience to learn from others.”
The entire team came together in Eindhoven and chose one of the challenges proposed by the Municipality of Eindhoven: How can we make shared mobility accessible to everyone?
“From our point of view, this was not the right question,” Robbie explains. We raised another one and started working on it. Namely, How can we use shared mobility to make Eindhoven accessible to vulnerable target groups? To do that, we focused on the groups previously identified by the Knowledge Institute for Mobility Policy.
Nieve explains why: “We looked at which challenge was most applicable to the city and would provide the greatest benefit to the inhabitants. We sharpened the question a bit because it was actually too broad and complex to answer in two days.”
“With our different areas of expertise, we came up with a great solution from a vague assignment” Pierre
Nieve: “I worked on a project about mobility poverty and the social impact of cycling for vulnerable target groups. So I knew the demographic data was available and that we could use it for this challenge.”
Robbie: “We were racking our brains about what types of mobility to include in our plan. We tried for a long time to include shared cars, but that proved too difficult. That’s why we ultimately focused on shared bicycles and scooters. It was going to be too complex a story to capture in a five-minute presentation.”
AND THE WINNER IS …
The team eventually walked away with second prize. “We managed to catch the judges’ attention with our analysis about the vulnerable target groups in the city,” Nieve explains. “The social component appealed to them, which tied in with their own work.”
The maps that the team added into the presentation last minute earned a compliment from the judges. SO last minute, in fact, that Robbie, who gave the presentation, did not know the maps were in there.
The maps clearly show that there is little shared mobility available in the nieghbourhoods where these vulnerable target groups live. “We uncovered a problem with this,” Robbie explained. “Unfortunately, we didn’t have enough time to work out concrete solutions.”
Nieve: “Of course there are areas for improvement, but despite that I am proud of the team. We started with one question and delivered a comprehensive report. We all contributed and strived for a good result. It’s great that our hard work was recognized by the judges!”
Robbie: “We were one of the few teams that had a lot of fun. I really enjoyed the company of the team and of course we went into town to celebrate the result.”
“Each of us brought something. I really enjoyed being able to rely on each other in this project.” Anna
This blog was originally posted in Dutch on the MobyPeople website on November 7th, 2022.