International Transport Forum - 2014 annual summit Transport for a Changing World | 21-23 may 2014 - Leipsig, Germany | France presidency

The Event

  • The leading global summit for transport ministers and decision-makers
  • 21-23 May 2014 in Leipzig, Germany
  • Organised by the International Transport Forum at the OECD
  • Panels, workshops, thematic roundtables, networking events, exhibition, technical tours
  • Opportunities to hold bilaterals, side events, media briefings

Who will be there

  • Ministers from 54 ITF member countries and more than 20 invited countries
  • CEOs and business leaders from transport and related sectors
  • Heads and senior representatives of international organisations
  • Heads of global, regional and national business associations
  • Leading researchers and academics from transport-related disciplines
  • 1 000 participants from around 80 countries

Understanding Trends - Shaping Responses 

Change is a dominant characteristic of our age. New technologies are creating entirely new possibilities. Demographic change is altering the profile of nations and of global society. A changing economic balance redistributes global opportunity. Emerging lifestyles create more diversity. Climate change challenges the fundament of mankind’s existence while perspectives on energy options are shifting. These and other megatrends impact mobility in ways that decision makers need to fully understand today in order to shape responses that will remain valid in a rapidly changing world.

Changing Technology

Big data is here to stay. Every day, almost 300 billion emails are sent, 30 billion pieces of information shared on Facebook and eight years of content uploaded to YouTube. More information is transmitted every second than was stored on the entire Internet 20 years ago. By 2018, 1.5 million data workers will be needed to separate signal from noise. Data management and analytics is a $100 billion industry and growing at almost 10% a year. The rise of mobile devices is unstoppable; mobile subscriptions today almost equal the earth’s population. Payments by mobile phone represent 25% of GDP in some African countries. 3D printing could revolutionise manufacturing and logistics. Sensors will empower cars, planes and trains to move autonomously. They will turn bridges and tunnels into smart infrastructure, part of an Internet of Things feeding on real-time information.

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Changing Demographics

Global population is exploding. Three billion humans lived on the planet in 1960; in 2050 world population could reach 9 billion. These people will need transport solutions for access to food, education, healthcare and jobs. Of population growth, 50% will be in Africa, where infrastructure lags most. Urbanisation will concentrate 70% of the world’s population in cities by 2050. Keeping urban areas from choking will be vital: the 40 largest mega regions account for two-thirds of the globe’s economic activity. Ageing is another driver for change, with the average age 9 years older in 2050 than today. By that time, China will be older than Europe. Ageing is only one factor that will impact mobility needs and infrastructure requirements – as much as the population explosion in Africa and Asia.
Photo: Eric.Parker Flickr cc

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Changing Economic Balance

The world economy’s centre of gravity is shifting. By 2050 Asia will be producing more than half the world’s output; China could overtake the US as the largest economy as early as 2018. This is reflected in trade flows: in 1990, 58% of world trade was among developed countries; today it is 38% and declining rapidly. The world’s ten largest container ports are in China and the Middle East; Shanghai alone handles more containers than the biggest three European ports combined. Manufacturing is globalised, with “world factories” relying on complex global supply chains as their assembly line. Logistics need to become ever more sophisticated – and resilience against unforeseen disruptions more critical.
Photo: jgmorard Flickr cc

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Changing Lifestyles

With new choices, lifestyles will evolve rapidly towards more diversity. Higher incomes, easier access to information, greater mobility, better education and innovative products present opportunities to shape one’s life in new ways. In emerging economies, 3 billion citizens will join the middle class and adopt more consumerist lifestyles, including buying a car. In the developed world, baby boomers are superseded by digital natives who shop, share, search and socialise online. Digital will be the new default. As Open Access becomes part of the mainstream, ownership will count less and collaborative consumption models will expand, exemplified by car sharing. Gender roles will be redefined as women leave old limitations behind – already more than 50% of the professional workforce in many countries is female. A new focus on health will emerge as the obesity epidemic spreads. Encouraging active lifestyles will see walking and cycling become an integral part of mobility.
Photo: World Bank Photo Collection Flickr cc

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Climate Change and Energy Options

Transport must decarbonise radically to help combat climate change. Yet transport accounts for 62% of world oil consumption, up from 45% in 1970. Forty years after the first oil shock, transport is still 97% dependent on fossil fuels. Rapid motorisation is driving emissions faster than fuel efficiency and alternative propulsion technologies can reduce them. By 2050, 3.3 billion cars could be on the planet, a 400% increase on today. Thus, global CO2 emissions from transport could grow by up to 170% by 2050, and by 420% outside the OECD area. Oil reserves are 60% larger today than in 1993, while fuel efficiency is growing rapidly. The share in the energy supply of renewables will not grow significantly. With market pressure unlikely to stimulate the decarbonisation of transport, regulatory regimes for emissions trading or subsidies for renewables and low-carbon mobility will be the focus.
Photo: World Bank Photo Collection Flickr cc

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Find out who will be at the Summit and how to register