Ease of mobility is crucial for cities’ productivity. Better mobility allows better access to jobs and allows firms access to a larger pool of workers. As cities grow, congestion can rapidly erode what it is that makes cities so vital for civilisation—as well as impose heavy environmental costs. In response, India’s Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs (MoHUA) has identified improving mobility as a crucial target for cities across the country in 2019.
Our research makes use of public, alternative and high frequency smartphone location data to assess the impact of mobility on productivity. We unearth the extent of congestion, quantify its economic and environmental costs and provide actionable results for policymakers.
We produced a working paper that assesses cities’ labour market efficiencies using Mumbai commuting data. We are also developing an interactive web-tool that allows users to realise the economic and environmental costs caused by their daily commute.
Our current data sources include Uber Movement, Google Maps and OpenStreetMap. Going forward, we will bring in techniques from graph theory, physics and machine learning as well as others we believe can address the issues.