The Future of Mobility: E-Cars and Beyond. Trends, Innovations and Politics

The Department of International Relations and the Walker School of Business & Technology at Webster University Geneva held a round-table on Monday, October 11, at 6:00 pm 2021 on “The Future of Mobility: E-Cars and Beyond. Trends, Innovations and Politics.”

About six years ago, following the COP 21 in Paris, but especially in 2019 with the damnation of the diesel fuel in France, politicians and governments started pushing for a radical change in the transportation mode towards e-vehicles. However, many skeptical experts retained this move as an inappropriate choice. There was no clear political vision and strategy to justify the choice between the gasoline engine, which contributes to climate change but is not too detrimental to health, and the diesel engine, which has to affect less effect on climate change but in the older version was having more adverse effects on our health. No clear choices were made. In particular, there was no objective justification for the new e-car trend outside the mediatic bubble, which was based mainly on a “wheel-to-wheel” concept instead of a more intellectually honest “well-to-wheel” concept. In a few words: How do we produce the necessary electric power to make our e-cars work?

Beyond the e-car, we should also think of the next renewable energies and also the fourth- or fifth-generation nuclear power plants. Nuclear power itself is indeed the cleanest power usable at industrial level. In fact, a thermal power plant emits more radioactivity in the atmosphere than a nuclear power plant. Are we sure we know all about nuclear power?

Last but not least, we have to re-think our way of transportation and adopt a sort of intermodal system in all cities: no more fossil fuel in urban areas. Only electric, fast trains all over Europe and a network of e-car sharing and subsidized e-bikes within the walls of the cities.

For this event, four distinguished speakers joined us::

Claude Chaudet, Head, Computer Science Program, Walker School of Business & Technology, Webster University Geneva

Daniela Leveratto, Technical Director, International Motorcycle Manufacturers Association (IMMA), and former Deputy Technical Director, International Organization of Motor Vehicle Manufacturers (OICA)

Stefano Maggi, Professor of Contemporary History, University of Siena

Roberto Di Stefano, CEO, Free2Move eSolutions, a joint venture between Stellantis and NHOA

The event was moderated by Emilio Radicioni, Physicist, INFN (National Institute for Nuclear Physics) and CERN (European Organization for Nuclear Research)

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