TransLink providing up to $50,000 in grants to university researchers

Sep 1 2018, 4:14 am

Researchers at post-secondary institutions can now apply for up to $50,000 in research funding grants to research new mobility issues and solutions.

TransLink launched its New Mobility Lab (NML) program today, which seeks researchers within the BC academic world to explore mobility themes spanning a range of disciplines that have a relevance to Metro Vancouver.

The total budget for the program’s first year in academic grant funding is $300,000. Project durations will range from one to two years.

Disciplines that fall under the New Mobility Research Grant Program include engineering, planning and policy, urban design, computer science, environmental and resource science, business, psychology, sociology, and economics.

“We are looking for applied research that has relevance to this region, so typically when we refer to new mobility we are looking at connected, automated, shared, and electric mobility,” Eve Hou, the Project Manager of TransLink’s NML, told Daily Hive.

“There are lots of technological changes happening, and also behavioural changes in the shared realm. We also want to look into the interplay of new mobility with infrastructure.”

NML falls under the umbrella of the TransLink Tomorrow initiative of collaborating with the private sector and academia to improve mobility in the region.

Earlier this summer, the public transit authority launched Open Innovation Call, the private sector equivalent of NML, which attracted 90 submissions on similar research parameters.

She says the number of submissions TransLink received exceeded their expectations, and the calibre of the submissions are “quite high.” At the moment, they are in the process of evaluating the proposals and selecting which ones to move forward.

“At TransLink, we realize we need to better understand what is happening, be better informed, and be engaged on some of these innovations,” she continued.

“We can use that research to help determine our direction, in terms of policies and programs.”

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