Throughout the week of Nov. 5, 2018, Audi hosted the second MQ! Summit in Ingolstadt, Germany. Focused on the future of mobility, the innovation conference attracted an international crowd of designers, engineers, and entrepreneurs. Speakers from a variety of industries were invited to present on their perspectives. Headlining the event, Steve Wozniak spoke about the importance of mobility and admitted to “spending more time thinking about autonomous and electric vehicles than about smartphones and computers.”
MQ! is shorthand for Mobility Quotient, which refers to the different ways in which mobility can be divided into categories. The conference is built on the premise that solving for mobility as a whole is too ambiguous of a topic, so it’s important to explicitly identify the subcategories that makeup this challenge. Attendees were encouraged to define their own breakdown of mobility.
Spatial mobility refers to the movement of people, materials or information from one place to another.
Thesis question: Where do the limits lie for mobility in a multi-dimensional world?
Social mobility is defined as the movement in between different socio-economic positions; both vertically (social climbing or declining), and horizontally (maintaining economic status).
Thesis question: What factors influence mobility within social structures?
Temporal mobility is understood as the chronological access to people, goods, and information. For example, the invention of the internet allowed for E-mobility -- information became accessible on demand as opposed to human dependent.
Thesis question: To what extent can mobility be temporally independent?
Sustainable Mobility: Sustainable mobility includes all aspects of movement that contribute to the preservation of a system with extra emphasis on conservation, stability, and regeneration of ecosystems.
Thesis question: How can mobility become as gentle on resources as possible?
In order to further investigate these topics, MQ! Summit attendees were encouraged to participate in small workshops where they had open discussions about each pillar of mobility. Borrowing from the design world, each workshop revolved around a ‘how might we’ statement. Topics ranged from “How might we improve the in-car shopping experience?” to “How might we calculate the total value of mobility?”
At the end of the 2018 MQ! Summit, 700 participants and 11 speakers reconvened in Audi’s retrofitted factory to hear Dr. Larissa Suzuki give closing remarks.