An Approach to Business Modeling for Sustainable Personal Road Transport
Sammanfattning: Between 1950 and 2013 the total amount of Swedish travelling has increased from about 20 billion to about 140 billion passenger kilometers. This included an increase in travelling with private cars from about 3 billion to about 105 billion passenger kilometers, and in bus travelling from about 2.5 billion to about 5 billion passenger kilometers. The European commission has indicated that public transportation (if powered by clean fuels) is a suitable way to reduce environmental and health problems. This thesis focuses on sustainable personal road transport, and aims to develop and test a new approach to examining the economic and socio-ecological sustainability effects of various road vehicles for private travelling and related business models. A special focus is set on comparing various bus systems for public transport and ways (business models) for private people to access cars. The main comparison parameters are the total cost of ownership and carbon dioxide emissions of different energy carriers for buses and cars. The Design Research Methodology is used to guide the research approach. The approach also builds on the Framework for Strategic Sustainable Development, which includes, for example, principles that define any sustainable future and a strategic planning process. The approach first employs Strategic Life Cycle Assessment to give a quick overview of sustainability challenges in each bus life cycle stage from raw materials to end of life. Several analysis tools such as Life Cycle Costing, Life Cycle Analysis, Product Service System, and Business Model Canvas mapping are then iteratively used to ”dig deeper” into identified prioritized challenges. Literature reviews, interviews, and simulations are used as supporting methods. The results from a first theoretical test of the new approach suggest that a shift from diesel buses to electric buses (powered by renewable energy) could significantly lower carbon dioxide emissions, while also significantly lowering the total cost of ownership. The theoretical calculations were followed up by testing of electric buses in real operation in eight Swedish municipalities. The tests verified the theoretical results, and showed that electric buses are better than diesel buses both from a sustainability point of view and a cost point of view, and also that electric bus operation is a practically viable alternative for public transport. The new approach was tested also by comparing a variety of business models for private car travelling. The results indicate, among other things, that only people who travel more than 13.500 kilometers per year would benefit from owning a car. In all, the thesis suggests a simultaneous shift from diesel buses to electric buses in public transport and, for the majority of the car drivers that drive less than 13.500 kilometers per year, switching from car ownership to car use services would be favourable for an affordable transition of the transport sector towards sustainability.
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