Pursuing softer urban mobility behaviors through game-based apps

Heliyon. 2020 May 12;6(5):e03930. doi: 10.1016/j.heliyon.2020.e03930. eCollection 2020 May.


Cities are currently engaged through their urban policies in pushing people towards less environmentally impacting mobility modalities: therefore, cycling and walking are strongly promoted, especially by means of new and wider limited traffic and no-cars zones. In this paper, the effectiveness of the new smartphones and apps-based technologies in modifying the mobility behaviors of citizens towards more sustainable choices has been investigated. Specifically, the potential of a smartphone app, directly involving citizens by means of a game rewarding the most sustainable trips, has been tested on a university commuters' group. These latter, starting from their current mobility situation, were challenged by an enhanced scenario characterized by more restrictive and sustainable targets. Promising results have been obtained suggesting that game-based tools could be effectively used as urban policy interventions intended to obtain a more sustainable mobility.

Keywords: Air quality; Climate change; Climate policy; Commuters; Environmental analysis; Environmental pollution; Environmental science; Game-based app; Information science; Smartphone; Sweet mobility; Urban energy consumption.