Elke Bossaert, Mobiel 21, Adi Hirzer, Bike Citizens
Ping! is a participatory campaign giving the chance to communicate directly with local policy to improve safe cycling.
Ping! is the participatory campaign by Mobiel 21 and Bike Citizens giving cyclists the opportunity to communicate and engage directly with local government in order to increase safe cycling in the city.
The main goal is to collect and visualise unsafety from the point of view of a highly heterogenous demographic of cyclists. Participants download the Bike Citizens app and install their Ping! on their bicycle or on their jacket. When starting their cycling route the app is activated and ready to start collecting pings. Every time one encounters a point where they feel unsafe a simple click on the button will mark that exact point the users track as well as on a map. After completion of the trip, cyclists will have a chance to give feedback on their pings. They can choose to either do that immediately or to be reminded of that later. Feedback can be given in the app as well as on a web-based user account.
1000 bluetooth buttons will be distributed among cyclists who volunteer to participate in this initiative. A simple ‘ping’ on the button will mark the point of clicking on a map. After completion of a trip, cyclists will have a chance to give written feedback on their pings . The more pings at one location, the more users have indicated this as an unsafe spot for cyclists. With the assistance of the project partners the local government analyses the problems and puts forward an action plan to tackle them.
The collected information and number of pings is valuable information for policy level. In fact it is perceived as a high participatory process with minimum effort from the users. The data collected during the campaign period will be processed using BC-Analytics to correlate pings with overall cycling data in the city. The findings of this analysis will be used to develop action plans and improve safety of cycling (and walking) taking into account the daily experience of citizens.
Research has shown that citizens are highly motivated to participate and engage in tracking apps and alike because of the opportunity to give information, input and feedback in a direct way to local politicians and policy level. In order to keep the motivation and involvement high during the complete campaign period a media mix is used to trigger attention and create a feeling of ownership.
The Ping! campaign is piloted in the region of Brussels and supported by the secretary of state from the regional government.
Ping! will be officially launched in May 2016, results will be ready and published by October 2016.
At the European Transport Conference the audience will get the scoop to hear and learn more about the participatory project to improve hard and soft measures for safe cycling. An interactive and refreshing presentation by two companies with years of experience in the field.
Association for European Transport