Mobility management: a driving force for mobility transition

Transport is a big challenge when it comes to climate protection. Without a transition to sustainable transport, climate protection goals will not be attained. Mobility management is a powerful lever for change and can be implemented by businesses, schools, municipalities and in tourism.

VCÖ-Factsheet "Mobility management: a driving force for mobility transition" as PDF

Having to choose costs energy, whereas routines make everyday life easier. This is particularly true for mobility, where the majority of trips are routine trips mostly made with the same mode of transport.1,2,3 The reasons for these mobility decisions and the resulting habits are diverse and range from personal preferences, budgets, and available transport services, all the way to regulatory framework conditions.4 Without strong incentives and new alternatives, such customary routines will rarely be changed fundamentally.5 This is precisely where mobility management sets in, thus playing an important role in the transition to sustainable mobility.

Using mobility management as a powerful lever

Mobility management addresses specific target groups and helps to make transport climate-friendly and efficient. It encompasses the mobility of employees and guests, but also delivery, the vehicle fleet and freight logistics.

The range of proven measures comprises awareness raising, the promotion of active mobility and use of public transport, carpooling, fleet management and the demand-oriented upgrading of infrastructure.6 The approach goes beyond spatial mobility. The choice of location, flexible work arrangements and virtual mobility schemes can also be used for this purpose.

Mobility management as an opportunity for businesses

Commuting is the most frequent reason for travel on workdays. Together with business trips, commutes account for about half of the car traffic for households in Austria. On top of that, 60 per cent of the commutes are made by single drivers, while the percentage of carpooling is comparably low.7 As many employees typically commute to work on a regular basis and with the same destination, such trips are ideal for implementing collaborative solutions. Commuting and business trips shape the travel routines of employees, which is why measures taken in this field have great potential to impact everyday and leisure trips at the same time. Corporate mobility management not only covers commuting and business trips, but also factory traffic, logistics and fleets as well as customer mobility. The approach to tackle the issue includes providing information and raising awareness, offering financial incentives, adjusting business travel policies and infrastructure measures. Supported by changes to the legal framework, many companies are introducing job bike and job ticket programmes. Successful mobility management cuts down the number of car parking spaces required at the business premises, raises the company‘s attractiveness as an employer, reduces costs for employees, has positive health effects and reduces traffic load in the region. There are numerous examples showing the success of corporate mobility management and its benefits for enterprises, employees and the environment.


Tourist regions coordinating transport services

The “Touristische Mobilitätszentrale Kärnten” (Tourism Mobility Centre Carinthia) was established in 2016 as a cooperation of eight tourist regions, the Province of Carinthia and Kärnten Werbung. Its core task is to enable tourists to travel to and move around Carinthia without a private car. To achieve this, the uniform Carinthia-wide train station shuttle service was launched in 2017, which provides transfer between train stations and accommodations. The Nockmobil, Südmobil and Lila projects use online platforms to connect the public transport system with regional shared taxis. This offer is rounded out by buses for cyclists and hikers. Since 2022, all suburban railways across Carinthia can also be used free of charge with a valid guest card.

Setting measures for sustainable tourism

The number of holiday trips in Austria is rising. We go on holiday more frequently, but our stays are shorter.8 82 per cent of the trips to destinations within Austria are made by car.9 When it comes to ski holidays in Austria, car travel generates 42 per cent of the overall CO2-emissions. The figure is even higher for summer holidays with 52 per cent.10 Since traffic congestion, noise, and exhaust fumes prevent tourists from enjoying their holidays, many tourist regions have offers for car-free travel to/from and within a destination area. Mobility management measures in tourism range from cooperation with public transport providers, hiking and ski buses, shuttle services, shared taxis, luggage transport, car sharing and bike rental services to awareness-raising measures and related advertising as well as the establishment of regional coordination offices and contact persons. While enhancing the options for holidaymakers, these measures often improve transport services for the regional population as well.

Independent travel to school and kindergarten

In 1995, 35 per cent of the children walked to school, which was still twice as high as the number who were driven by their parents. In 2014, they were equal at 25 per cent each. In the same period, the percentage of children aged 6 to 14 walking and cycling on weekdays dropped from 50 to 35 per cent.11 In Austria, 81 per cent of 15-year-old boys are affected by a lack of exercise. For girls, the number is as high as 90 per cent.12 Thanks to mobility management, educational institutions have the opportunity to reduce traffic in the school environment and enable children and young people to travel to kindergartens and schools independently and safely. Active travel to and from school promotes children’s health, concentration in class, and independence, while also relieving parents of taxi duties. Measures that can be taken range from mobility education in class, setting up walking bus and bike bus routes, school streets and stops for parents to drop their children off, conducting school environment analyses, and helping design school routes with the children’s involvement, to raising awareness, for example in the form of mobility days, workshops and playful incentive systems. The primary schools in Wörgl and Bad Hofgastein serve as examples of successful school mobility management. Youth centres and out-of-school youth facilities can also implement measures for independent mobility.

Cities and municipalities setting a framework

Mobility behaviour is strongly influenced by the living situation and the transport services at the place of residence. That is why cities and municipalities are key players that can accelerate the necessary transition to sustainable mobility by introducing municipal mobility management. The approach may include the development and implementation of local cycling and walking concepts and Master Plans as well as the expansion of walking and cycling infrastructure, with good accessibility to public transport. It may also include the establishment of mobility centres as service points and transfer hubs as well as car, bike or cargo bike sharing, the replacement of municipal vehicles by e-cars, the appointment of municipal mobility officers, the creation of on-demand transport services such as shared taxis and on-call buses, measures to promote carpooling and implementation of parking space management and parking management.

Housing is a key mobility factor

Most journeys start and end at home. While the parking space ordinances in Austria still assume private cars to be the norm, there is an increasing number of innovative residential projects that focus on good connections to public transport and cycling paths. Moreover, individual mobility consulting, trial tickets and car sharing vehicles may help promote climate-friendly mobility in the housing sector.13

Municipality implementing a mobility package

In 2014, the municipality of Wolfurt in the province of Vorarlberg was the first in Austria to implement shared space on a provincial road in the town centre. Other shared spaces at a children‘s campus and in a residential area followed. Municipal employees can take part in regular job bike and bike service programmes. Since 2019, two car-sharing vehicles have been publicly available. Together with six other municipalities, Wolfurt has implemented regional parking management that also covers parking by municipal employees. A digital points system encourages them to use climate-friendly commuting and business travel options.

Mobility management can be used in a variety of ways

Mobility management makes sense wherever a lot of traffic is generated, for example in the context of shopping. Shops could offer climate-friendly delivery services as well as cargo bikes and trolleys for rent, support cycling by offering well-placed, high-quality bicycle parking facilities and repair stations and providing charging stations for electric vehicles. The Ikea store at Vienna’s Westbahnhof station is an example of how shopping is possible without a car park.

Traffic is also generated by larger-scale events. If organisers cooperate with public transport operators regarding timetables and combined tickets, arrange shuttle services, provide incentives for carpooling and actively communicate ways of car-free and climate-friendly travel to and from the venue, this may reduce the amount of traffic. To achieve this, the federal initiative “Green Events” has provided consulting services and measures in the field of mobility since 2006.14

When it comes to mobility, clubs and associations also have a social responsibility. The ice hockey club Black Wings Linz, for example, has adopted sustainability measures and is the only professional sports club in Austria to organise all home games as green events since the 2022/23 season.15

How to implement mobility management

Mobility management offers a great opportunity to break mobility routines through adapted measures and incentives. This can both reduce the traffic load and make mobility more environmentally friendly and more cost-effective. While concrete implementation strongly depends on the respective context, some general success factors for mobility management can be identified:16,17

  1. Inform: involve target groups and look out for local cooperation opportunities

  2. Analyse: determine the actual state and estimate the modal shift potentials

  3. Plan: set targets, define measures

  4. Implement: implement and evaluate measures

  5. Maintain: ensure sustainable implementation


Taking advantage of support programmes

In Austria, the klimaaktiv mobil programme supports mobility management and active mobility. Its services range from funding, target group-oriented advisory programmes for businesses, cities and municipalities, tourist regions, schools and youth organisations, to awareness raising, certifications and partnerships. In 2022, 190 projects were supported. Funding totalled 67.8 million euros. This resulted in environment-related investments of approximately 292 million euros and created or secured 2,600 jobs. In total, about 850,000 tonnes of CO2-emissions will be avoided over the expected useful life of the implemented measures.18


Mobility management creates win-win-win situations

  • Mobility is based on routines that can be changed by a demand-oriented offer, infrastructure, information, awareness raising, and motivation. This is precisely where mobility management comes into the play.

  • Mobility management is a site-based activity and can be implemented at locations that generate traffic, such as companies, schools, tourist regions, housing estates, municipal authorities, shopping centres, etc.

  • Many practical examples show that mobility management can be implemented successfully in completely different areas. This proves beneficial to both initiators and the respective target group and helps the environment and society in general.

Step by step: from pilot project to standard practice

  • Making mobility management a standard requires a mix of support and consulting services, and uniform quality criteria as well as incentive systems and obligations.

  • Mobility management increases efficiency and reduces costs. It should therefore become a standard for larger companies, housing estates, tourist regions, schools and other significant sources of traffic.

Michael Schwendinger, VCÖ ‑ Mobility with a future

„Hardly any instrument for influencing daily mobility behaviour has as much potential as mobility management. And hardly any other instrument should quickly become the common standard if we want to achieve the necessary transport transition in time.“

VCÖ-Factsheet "Mobility management: a driving force for mobility transition" as PDF

The content and editorial creation of the VCÖ factsheet is done by VCÖ. The content does not necessarily reflect the opinion of the supporting institutions. This factsheet was produced with the financial support of the Federal Ministry for Climate Action, Environment, Energy, Mobility, Innovation and Technology.

Media owner, editor and publisher: VCÖ, 1050 Vienna, ZVR no. 674059554.
Publishing information: VCÖ, Bräuhausgasse 7–9, 1050 Vienna, T +43-(0)1-893 26 97, E,, Photo credits: page 1: Haberkorn GmbH, page 2: Region Villach/Michael Stabentheiner, page 3: Marktgemeinde Wolfurt, page 4: VCÖ/Rita Newman

For free consultation on mobility management for businesses, leisure and tourism facilities, developers, cities, municipalities, regions, education facilities and administration, visit:


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