Discussion Guide:

On the Move: the Future of Mobility of People, Products, and Ideas

April 24, 2024

Sometimes, it feels like the whole world is on the move.

More people, products, goods, information, ideas, values, and money are moving and moving faster. In 2019, there were over 230 million international migrants, equivalent to the world’s 5th most populous country. There were also over 1 billion international arrivals, part of making travel and tourism the largest global industry. At home, we are commuting greater distances for work, school, and shopping. Products are also on the move. Manufacturing is now a multinational operation, moving parts around the world before the assembled good appears in the store. Global economies demand goods and media, often in a variety of legal, illegal, counterfeit, or pirated forms. The Internet has made the movement of information instantaneous, and growing access to mobile technologies allow us to be on the move without ever actually going anywhere. Who is able to travel, forced to relocate, and what are the long-term implications of a “transportation divide”? How does mobility affect our sense of self, family, and community? Should products be able to move freely? What are the environmental costs of mobility? How will current and future technology impact the future of mobility? How is virtual mobility reshaping our lives? Should we just slow down, and how do we do that? This discussion guide invites participants to explore multiple policy ideas and discuss their consequences and trade-offs to gain a deeper understanding of the policy issues affecting the future of mobility.

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