On April 26, Allianz hosted the sixth Explorer Micro-Conference in Paris. The panel consisted of leading experts from the automotive and insurance industry that came together at the public cultural center le CENTQUATRE. Hosted by Jon Barnes, lecturer, thinker and digital transformist, the panel led a passionate discussion about the possibilities of increasing the quality of urban living through new mobilities.
The panel agreed that the quality of life in the French capital was immensely compromised by levels of pollution and traffic: “Paris has become the opposite of the city of tomorrow. And with that I mean this terrible congestion that makes it impossible to move”, said Bruno Vanryb, serial entrepreneur and pioneer in the French high-tech industry. Franck Cazenave, President Megacities Institute echoed the sentiment when he referred to city highway (périphérique) as the „biggest parking lot in the Paris region (…) of France, Europe”. Delphine Asseraf, “My Mobility" ecosystem leader at Allianz France pointed out that while the car used to symbolize freedom of movement it “has now become a burden” and her hope would be to “find entirely new forms of mobility (…) that will allow to “redesign the spaces we are living in the city and the circulation in the city”.
While all agreed that new mobility solutions like car sharing and electric vehicles were offering promising examples of how to tackle the problems of traffic congestion and environmental pollution and were “the future of Paris” (Vanryb), they disagreed on the timeframe regarding when real and broad impact could be perceived; “the future is uncertain” said Cazenave.
Delphine Asseraf underlined the validity of having these discussions to create change and impact and pointed out that it is exactly the goal of the Allianz Global Explorer Program to find those explorers and people who want to contribute to new mobility solutions.