Unlocking Large-Scale Access to Combined Mobility through a European MaaS Network

Following recent mega-trends in the mobile and sharing economy and thanks to the latest ITS developments, “Mobility as a Service” is conceived as the way people will move themselves and their goods in the future. The “as a service” paradigm can be a real revolution when it is able to ensure higher continuity among the different means of transport, and enable offering combined mobility packages as a viable alternative to fragmented mobility and car ownership. Though some MaaS initiatives have already been tested in Europe, they encountered several obstacles in reaching scale and stable business operation. IMOVE will learn from such initiatives as UBIGO in Gothenburg or Hannovermobil, launched a decade ago in Hannover, and will step forward contributing to radically change mobility paradigms bringing in disruptive elements of mobility services.

Innovative business and technology enablers will be investigated able to concretely put into action, accelerate and scale up the MaaS market deployment in Europe, ultimately paving the way for a “roaming” capability for MaaS users at the European level. IMOVE research and innovation action is based on investigation, development and validation of bottom up novel solutions able to define sound MaaS business models, smoothing their efficient and profitable service operation. A suite of ITS elements empowering MaaS schemes will be delivered by IMOVE, including technology components for real-time collection of fine-grained data on mobility user needs, habits and preferences as well as components enabling the exchange of information and enhancing seamless interoperability among different MaaS subsystems and multiple MaaS schemes.

IMOVE solutions will be investigated and validated in 5 European Living Labs, currently engaged in or having plans for MaaS development. The participation of UITP will ensure active participation of PTAs as well as key private stakeholders from other sites and will further guarantee a multiplier effect.

Mobility as a Service (MaaS) schemes are seen as the way citizens will use to move themselves and their goods in the future. The “as a service” wave will allow breaking the borders between the different means of transport, offering customers combined mobility packages as a viable alternative to own mobility and car ownership. Indeed, a MaaS is a mobility distribution model in which customer’s major transportation needs are met thanks to one single integrated service provider combining transportation infrastructures, travel information, payment services and more.

Even if some MaaS initiatives have been piloted across Europe, so far most of them had problems reaching a significant scale and stable business operation, and there is still a lack of a solid MaaS experience replicable at the EU level. Experiences such as UBIGO (partner of IMOVE) in Gothenburg and Hannovermobil, launched already a decade ago in Hannover (also involved in IMOVE as member of UITP) have highlighted some of the biggest barriers MaaS schemes are facing.

Achieving the appropriate balance between public and private components in the combined mobility scheme is a major issue, with the need of compromising between different business roles, objectives and attitudes within the same ecosystem. The adoption of viable policies for information and service sharing is also a barrier to overcome, with the handling of business-sensitive data, commercially exploitable user-related information and privacy aspects presenting, at the same time, opportunities and threats for the MaaS success. In order to be successful and sustainable in the long run, a MaaS scheme should scale up fast to reach a critical mass of addressed customers’ segments and volumes, and allow offering customized and competitive mobility packages to users. This growth will generate additional opportunities to expand the coverage of the MaaS and, in a further step, to consolidate and become globally accessible similar to roaming in communications.

Overall, nowadays MaaS schemes can be seen as disruptive startup initiatives with great potential, but due to the implied challenges of public/private mobility integration, information handling and sharing, service interoperability and scalability requirements, specific actions to accelerate an appropriate and sustainable take off are needed.

The overall objective of the IMOVE project is to accelerate the deployment and unlock the scalability of MaaS schemes in Europe, ultimately paving the way for a “roaming” service for MaaS users at the European level. To this end, IMOVE will investigate and validate advanced solutions for improving MaaS deployment and operation and their underlying business models. Core ITS elements enabling MaaS development will be delivered, including enhanced real-time collection of data about user needs, habits and preferences, tools for the (controlled) exchange of information and tools to enhance interoperability among different service components/MaaS schemes. The IMOVE impact will be tested at four sites (plus one roaming pilot involving more sites), all strongly engaged in the MaaS domain and setting specific actions on existing or new MaaS schemes. The sites have been selected according to their complementarity, where success and failure factors for any specific measure and context will be investigated and evaluated. The resulting knowledge and lessons learned will be made available and shared with any interested MaaS operator.

The following key operational tasks are needed to reach the overall objective:

  • Create solid and resilient business models, adapted to the specific segments of mobility users, local frameworks, transport operator cooperation models, able to adjust service offering and business operation in response to behavioural changes and tendencies detected through continuous monitoring and real data collection about user needs, habits and preferences.
  • Develop Open APIs enhancing the interoperability of MaaS proprietary platforms with other relevant thirdparty ITS services (e.g Journey Planners, Travel Booking tools, mobile Apps) and allowing users to keep using their preferred applications when interacting with MaaS services, thereby widening their accessibility and outreach.
  • Enable roaming between different MaaS schemes by supporting business cooperation between MaaS operators through the exchange of an “agreed minimum amount” of information, and improving user experience through enhanced user profiling and unique identification across multiple services, applications and MaaS providers.
  • Unlock the potentials of a very valuable set of integrated information about mobility choices and behaviour obtained connecting existing data (e.g. across a journey, a day, months, etc.) that today can be hardly related to the same user and used to improve MaaS operation and provide value-added user services.

Softeco Sismat SRL (IT)

Mosaic Factor SL (ES)

Union Internationale des Transports Publics (BE)

UBIGO Innovation AB (SE)

FIT Consulting SRL (IT)

Institute of Communication and Computer Systems (GR)

Vectos (South) Limited (UK)

Ceske Vysoke Uceni Technicke V Praze (CZ)

Comune di Torino (IT)


Transport for Greater Manchester (UK)



RISE Viktoria AB (SE)

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Project is running, stay tuned for results!
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Marco Boero

Marco Gorini

Know how - Mobility


EC Programme

Grant Agreement

Start date
June 2017

36 months

Softeco Sismat