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The Future of Mobility – Challenges of the Future 2020

Dr. Jiayu Wu, Senior Research Fellow in the RCA Intelligent Mobility Design Centre (IMDC), has been awarded a Design Fellowship (£55k) by the Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC) to conduct research into ‘The Future of Mobility’ – a systematic review of UK university-led design driven research into mobility innovation.

Dr. Jiayu Wu
Dr. Jiayu (Zoe) Wu

A game-changing report

The ‘UK Design Research: The Future of Mobility’ report will form an overview of the UK mobility design research landscape. It will provide recommendations to support academics, researchers and designers who are contributing to design research in the theme of the future of mobility and will contain in-depth individual case studies and new data.


Problems within the UK mobility design research landscape

The report will identify:

  • where research communities are located; 
  • the challenges they face developing ideas into funded research and forming appropriate consortia; 
  • how they reinforce the impact of research in economic, societal and technological transformations; 
  • what are the obstacles and benefits that design-led approaches drive in their research.


Insights from industry and academia

The proposed activities include a review of publications and funding schemes, email surveys reaching out to individual researchers, regional focus groups collecting research details, industry surveys and visits, meetings involving government departments and organisations, and in-depth case studies.


Vehicle design and accessible design expertise

As a world leader in the field of vehicle design and research, the RCA’s IMDC is ideally placed to produce this report on UK Mobility Design Research and its influence in relevant industries. IMDC is unique in its ability to facilitate discourse with UK academic organisations, industry and government, and highlight achievements and challenges of design research in mobility fields.


Challenges of the Future 2020

This Design Fellowship is one of five Design Fellowships awarded by the AHRC under their Challenges of the Future 2020 scheme, aimed at assessing the value of UK university-led design research to the UK’s industrial strategy. Each Fellow will produce a distinct report on the contribution of design research to one key Challenge and the other themes are 'AI & data', 'Public Services', 'Public Policy' and 'Place'. 


Get Involved

We would love to hear from academics based at UK institutions and industry professionals from mobility related fields who would like to share knowledge. Please email Dr. Jiayu Wu on [email protected] and we will include you in our networking events, on our Mobility Design Research List of Professionals and share the final report with you.