What is the Inclusive Mobility program?

Inclusive Mobility is an initiative we launched here at Volkswagen Group of America. But what exactly does the program entail?

Busy pedestrian crosswalk

May 1, 2019
Contributed by: Inclusive Mobility team

The Inclusive Mobility program was created with the goal of helping to provide broader access to transportation, particularly for people with disabilities. Through this program, we are collaborating with disability advocacy and community groups during the earliest stages of the design surrounding vehicle technologies and mobility services.

According to the U.S. Census Bureau, nearly one in five people have a disability in the U.S.—that’s a large underserved segment of our population.

Because of this, our program aims to collaborate with disability groups in the earliest stages of the design of vehicle technologies and mobility services. With new vehicle technology—especially autonomous technologies—we have the chance to help build new solutions for people who currently have limited mobility options.

Much of the public conversation around vehicle technologies has focused on safety, comfort, and convenience. But for people who have limited access to safe, reliable, independent and affordable transportation, advances in vehicle technology can offer life changing potential.

The Inclusive Mobility Design Partner Program is a first step towards this goal. Through this program, we are working with a number of disability advocacy and community groups to identify and innovate upon mobility challenges that individuals with disabilities encounter in their daily lives. We are constantly learning from those we work with through continuous engagement and co-sponsored events, such as the roundtable discussion we hosted last December in Washington D.C. involving disability advocacy groups, experts, and Volkswagen designers and engineers.

We started laying the foundation for this program last year through outreach and collaboration with groups like the National Federation of the Blind (NFB), the Disability Rights Education and Defense Fund (DREDF), and the National Association of the Deaf (NAD). Initial research efforts have included a series of expert and user interviews on disabilities related to mobility, vision, hearing, and cognition.

We hope you’ll join us in our mission to help make transportation more inclusive.

Photo by mauro mora

Share this post: