Ridesharing Service in Local Governments’ Transport Policy

Type de publication:

Conference Paper


Gerpisa colloquium, Paris (2017)


1, Question
What is optimal policy of ridesharing service? Who dose regulate ridesharing service and decide service level?
It is said that ridesharing service, like UBER, would solve various transportation problem in many country, also Japan. We can make use of ridesharing service to solve problem at region where transportation services are not enough. But there is any problem about introduction of new ridesharing service. The largest problem is friction with existing taxi or public transport operators. So someone must adjust interests among ridesharing service, taxi and public transport to use ridesharing service thoughtfully.
In this article, I focus on Local Government and its transportation policy. I elucidate the way that ridesharing service should be included into comprehensive and systematic local transport policy.
2, The roll for Local Government to ridesharing service
To use ridesharing service thoughtfully, Local Government should play three roles.
The first role is to define service level of ridesharing service. Nowadays, many local governments draw up comprehensive local transport plan, like LTP (Local Transport Plan) in UK or PDU (Urban Traffic Plan) in France. Local Government should define service level of ridesharing service in comprehensive local transport plan that is including adjustment with exciting taxi and traffic service. So ridesharing service could contribute to solve local transportation problem, to guarantee transportation rights and to develop sustainable transport.
The second role is authority and regulator to ridesharing service. As Local Government can know the detailed information of the area, they can control more optimistically than National Government.
The third role is consensus-building to introduction of ridesharing service. There are two ways. The first way is a stakeholder council of local transportation policy. Local Government should establish a stakeholder council that might be consisted of local officers, ridesharing service operator, representatives of residents and consumers, chamber of commerce and industry and tourist association, labor union, educational and medical stakeholder, Environmental NGO and exciting taxi and public transport operator. The second way is public participation procedure at process of developing local transportation plan.

3, Relation with Ridesharing service operator and Local Government
To contribute to solving various problem and sustainable transport, the form of ridesharing service should also be diverse. UBER in Kyotango city Japan City is service in rural area without any bus service and any taxi service. This is no so much a typical UBER business model as social business or a non-profitable service. This case shows another possibility of ridesharing service. Taking into account a relation with Local Government, there are three main types of ridesharing service.
The first type is private operator in competition market. In city where are enough transportation demands and needs, as market competition can maximize social welfare, this type rideshare service must contribute to solve urban transport problem. The role of Local Government is adjustment of relation among suppliers and consumer protect. Of course Ridesharing service operator must follow or respect the policy indicated in the local transportation plan.
The second type is social business or a non-profitable service. NGO, NPO or community association must be management of ridesharing service. Ridesharing service operator might be collaborator of these association. Local Government should provide technical assistance, subsidy for cost of operation, rolling stock and infrastructure. And Local government must define these service in local transportation plan.
These two types of service have already excited. But, to develop ridesharing service for sustainable transport, we must consider another type. That is Public-Private-Partnership model (PPP). In PPP model, Local Government must be management of ridesharing service, but might not operate. Local Government must delegate operation of ridesharing service to private operator. Some local governments might give subsidies. This PPP ridesharing service is same as PPP of urban public transport, example French cities. In PPP model, Local Government must decide service level in local transportation plan that might define comprehensive transport network consisted of not only ridesharing service but also rail and bus service, taxi, walk and bicycle.
Many cities have ever adopted PPP delegation for urban rail and bus service. There is much accumulation of knowledge about PPP delegation that is very useful to both Local Government and transportation operator. So it is one optimal solution for both Local Government and ridesharing service operator that ridesharing service is adopted PPP delegation.
4, Conclusion
Local governments should play an important role for a good future of ridesharing service. Comprehensive local transport plan is the most important for introduction ridesharing service. Because that plan can define service level, might be the basis for regulation and must include consensus-building and public participation procedure. PPP delegation must bring a good relationship among Local Government and ridesharing operator, also exiting traffic operator. Ridesharing service must be adopted new idea made from existing public transport policy means.

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