About the Micromobility Research Partnership™

The Micromobility Research Partnership (MRP™) is an independent research body, born out of a partnership between academics and researchers across Australia and New Zealand.

The MRP™ will conduct research on sustainable transport to identify and promote priority pathways to reduce global transport emissions, and other topics including:

  • Micromobility’s economic and social value to a city, including strategies to address transport poverty and promote social inclusion.
  • The environmental impact of micromobility in improving air quality and reducing transport emissions
  • Understanding the current and potential future use of micromobility as a mode of transport, and its impacts on car-use and car-ownership
  • Delivering safe and sustainable transport futures

MRP™ continues to grow its academic collaborations globally with the aim to educate and inform towards a less emitting transport future. 

We therefore invite academics, researchers and industry experts in the field of sustainable transportation and micromobility to make contact to join our journey, via collaborations@MRP.com

Meet the members of the Micromobility Research Partnership™

Mr Ferdinand Balfoort

Managing Partner of Micromobility Research Partnership™

Mr Ferdinand Balfoort is a global professional advisor and academic researcher in the areas of ESG, sustainable transport and micromobility as well as governance, compliance and financial and sustainable impact reporting. Since 2016 Ferdinand has worked on a range of green technology/ ESG projects globally, both for listed and unlisted clients, and has extended his financial accounting and audit expertise to sustainability accounting, standards, modeling, and carbon certification. He has project managed complex sustainable transportation and logistics projects with multinationals and university partners, including at Tata Steel, Blue Scope Steel, SkyNRG/KLM, Rio Tinto, as well as EU and Asian government agencies and research institutions (CSIRO (Australia), Callaghan Institute (NZ), Khazanah Nasional Bhd (Malaysia). He leads the Micromobility Research Partnership™ (www.theMRP.org), a Not For Profit research foundation.  He is the sustainable transport advisor to Beam Technology (APAC), where he develops sustainability frameworks, carbon emission models and sustainable accounting approaches for the micromobility sector, to achieve a measurable reduction in traditional fossil fuelled transport modes GHG emissions.  In addition, Ferdinand is carbon certification lead for Urban Analytica, a University of Melbourne transport technology spin off focussing on applied telematics and IoT technology to reduce transport emissions.

Dr Abraham Leung

Advance Queensland Industry Research Fellow

Dr Abraham Leung is the Advance Queensland Industry Research Fellow at Cities Research Institute Griffith University. Working closely with micromobility partners, he is currently developing tourism-focused Mobility-as-a-Service (MaaS) trials that facilitate intermodal and multi-service integration. With a solid background in urban planning and spatial data sciences, his research currently focuses on microtransport innovation, governance and also impacts in the Asia Pacific and Europe. His research has been published in numerous highly ranked academic journals and media outlets.

Stephen D Greaves, Ph.D.

Professor

Stephen Greaves is a Professor in Transport Management in the Institute of Transport & Logistics Studies (ITLS) within the Business School at the University of Sydney. Research interests include the health, environmental, and safety impacts of transport, micro-mobility, active travel, new vehicle technologies including electric vehicles and autonomous vehicles, and innovative travel data collection methods using the latest technologies. He has ARC, NHMRC and other competitive grant success, has advised several PhD students to completion and publishes in a range of mediums. Stephen also provides transport consulting services to government and industry and provides regular media commentary on contemporary transport policy issues. From 2014-17, Stephen served as the Director of the Business School Doctoral studies program.

Simona Mihaita

Senior Lecturer

Simona Mihaita is a Senior Lecturer at the University of Technology in Sydney, founder of the Future Mobility Lab. She is the winner of the 2022 Women in AI Awards Infrastructure, triple finalist in the 2021 IoT Awards – Smart Cities, 2021 ITS Australia for Transport Data Excellence, winner of the 2018 ITS Australia National Awards, a TfNSW Expert panel member, awarded Monash Business School Scholarship for Women in Leadership 2018, and interviewed by Channel 7 News and The Guardian.

The University of Auckland's Transportation Research Centre (TRC) is dedicated to conducting research that covers all aspects of Transportation. We explore a broad range of transportation and mobility research including transport safety, construction materials and infrastructure design and asset management, to traffic systems, AI and advanced modelling, new transport technologies, user behaviours, and public transit.

Beam Australia and New Zealand’s General Manager Tom Cooper said:

“Since our launch into Australia and New Zealand, Beam has always been committed to working with academics and researchers to examine the impacts of micromobility on the environment, cities and communities which we operate in.

It is with great excitement that Beam initiates the Micromobility Research Partnership, with a commitment to contributing funding, our aggregated data and other operational findings towards greater understanding of micromobility in the region.

Beam is committed to partnerships that better improve Australians and New Zealanders’ access to multi-modal transport, and we see this partnership as yet another step taken towards enabling shared mobility solutions for all in Australia, New Zealand as well as globally.

This will encourage and enable increased research and study into micromobility in the region.”

Dr Robin Smit

“It is unlikely we will achieve a rapid reduction in greenhouse gas emissions solely through electrification of the road transport sector. The focus should also be on improving energy efficiency. It is simple: the heavier a vehicle, the more energy is required per kilometre of driving. So light-weighting and down-sizing of the on-road fleet and reversing the trend of ever-larger and heavier vehicles will be critical to address climate change. Micro-mobility will play a pivotal role in the transition to sustainable transport.”

Mr Ferdinand Balfoort

“Transport emissions globally continue to rise in spite of efforts to reduce these to meet Paris Agreement targets. Transport-related emissions also represent a significant portion of global emissions and contribute significantly to mortalities and health issues globally. I am therefore looking forward to engaging with my academic peers in cutting edge research on transport sustainability, to thereby provide policymakers and governments reliable insights and data, and hence accelerate the reduction in reliance on traditional fossil-fuelled transportation.”

Professor Hussein Dia

“The MRP will help provide the research community with access to much-needed data to evaluate the sustainability and safety aspects of micromobility, particularly at a time when the industry is witnessing a rapid growth of technology and digitalization improvements leading to increasingly more durable and sustainable devices. This initiative will create opportunities for collaboration between researchers across the globe which will help to share case study results, quantify benefits and remove barriers to wide-scale adoption. The MRP will lead to the development of meaningful research to provide evidence of the role of micromobility as a solution to reduce reliance on private vehicle travel, particularly for first and last kilometre connections to transport hubs and for short commuting trips.”

Professor Mark Stevenson

“We are confronted by significant global health challenges in the 21st century, which are prompting calls to rethink how we deliver key urban systems. This is particularly the situation when dealing with the transport system. Our transport futures will rely on new initiatives such as micromobility. I welcome the MRP; a partnership that will support independent, robust research and provide the important insights necessary for transport planning and policy decisions now and into the future.”

Beam Australia and New Zealand’s General Manager Tom Cooper said:

“Since our launch into Australia and New Zealand, Beam has always been committed to working with academics and researchers to examine the impacts of micromobility on the environment, cities and communities which we operate in.

It is with great excitement that Beam initiates the Micromobility Research Partnership™, with a commitment to contributing funding, our aggregated data and other operational findings towards greater understanding of micromobility in the region.

Beam is committed to partnerships that better improve Australians and New Zealanders’ access to multi-modal transport, and we see this partnership as yet another step taken towards enabling shared mobility solutions for all in Australia, New Zealand as well as globally.

This will encourage and enable increased research and study into micromobility in the region.”

Impact Consultant Ferdinand Balfoort said:

“Transport emissions globally continue to rise in spite of efforts to reduce these to meet Paris Agreement targets. Transport-related emissions also represent a significant portion of global emissions and contribute significantly to mortalities and health issues globally. I am therefore looking forward to engaging with my academic peers in cutting edge research on transport sustainability, to thereby provide policymakers and governments reliable insights and data, and hence accelerate the reduction in reliance on traditional fossil-fuelled transportation.”

Dr Robin Smit said:

“It is unlikely we will achieve a rapid reduction in greenhouse gas emissions solely through electrification of the road transport sector. The focus should also be on improving energy efficiency. It is simple: the heavier a vehicle, the more energy is required per kilometre of driving. So light-weighting and down-sizing of the on-road fleet and reversing the trend of ever-larger and heavier vehicles will be critical to address climate change. Micro-mobility will play a pivotal role in the transition to sustainable transport.”

Professor Hussein Dia said:

“The MRP will help provide the research community with access to much-needed data to evaluate the sustainability and safety aspects of micromobility, particularly at a time when the industry is witnessing a rapid growth of technology and digitalization improvements leading to increasingly more durable and sustainable devices. This initiative will create opportunities for collaboration between researchers across the globe which will help to share case study results, quantify benefits and remove barriers to wide-scale adoption. The MRP will lead to the development of meaningful research to provide evidence of the role of micromobility as a solution to reduce reliance on private vehicle travel, particularly for first and last kilometre connections to transport hubs and for short commuting trips.”

Professor Mark Stevenson said:

Professor Mark Stevenson“We are confronted by significant global health challenges in the 21st century, which are prompting calls to rethink how we deliver key urban systems. This is particularly the situation when dealing with the transport system. Our transport futures will rely on new initiatives such as micromobility. I welcome the MRP; a partnership that will support independent, robust research and provide the important insights necessary for transport planning and policy decisions now and into the future.”

Associate Professor Doug Wilson and Associate Professor Yun Sing Koh said:

"This partnership provides a genuine opportunity for research collaboration and advancing state-of-the-art research to promote and extend sustainable transport whilst minimising transport-related emissions and building environmental resilience. To quickly transition to a low / zero emission transport system requires strong leadership that enables effective collaboration of communities, agencies and industry to turn sustainable mobility visions into action. Business as usual’ will be seen by future generations as a failure, meaning that we will have missed opportunities to improve both social and environmental sustainability outcomes at a time of unprecedented technology uncertainty and change. Decisions on infrastructure and technology adoption must be evidence based to ensure preferred future options are realised. The safe trialing of new micro-mobility technologies (e.g. Beam) that serve short to medium length trips or first and last kilometre mobility requires the appropriate trialing, data monitoring, analytics and evaluation of user behaviours. A partnership between researchers, agencies, communities of users and industry will help us to together ensure better outcomes and enable evidence-based policy and the appropriate regulatory systems are put in place to manage these systems’. The Transportation Research Centre (TRC) of the University of Auckland is looking forward to working within the MRP to help meet transport mobility, access and community sustainability imperatives.”

Dr Maisie Rahbar said:

"The MRP will pave the way for understanding micro-mobility users’ travel behaviour, evaluating the role of
micro-mobility in developing a multi-modal transport system, calculating transport emissions reduction as a result of modal shifts toward micro-mobility, and delivering safe and sustainable transport through providing data and supporting the research community across the globe."

John Nelson said:

”One of the positives we can take from the pandemic is the renewed interest in active modes. We must seize the opportunity to ensure this is not merely a fleeting moment and work together to embed active mobility as a core component of local transport planning.”

Stephen D Greaves, Ph.D. said:

“Micro-mobility is front and central for sustainable last-mile passenger and freight solutions. As cleaner/greener modes, they promise a relatively affordable way to reduce the environmental and spatial impact of transport, contributing to healthier/liveable cities. However, their introduction in a safe and compatible way onto the existing urban transport landscape poses challenges for operators, consumers and policy-makers. Research is needed to inform the wise deployment of micro-mobility, which will require changes to infrastructure, regulations, and cultural norms around transport.”

The MRP™ will conduct research on sustainable transport to identify and promote priority pathways to reduce global transport emissions, and other topics.

The MRP™ will conduct collaborative research with academic institutions, automotive consumer associations, NGO and professional advisory firms on sustainable transport, in order to identify and promote priority science based pathways to reduce global transport emissions and other topics aligned to contribute to UN Sustainable Development Goals (UN SDG)

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