International VDI Conference - Smart Cars & Urban Mobility

  • Get insights from actual use cases about the new position of the smart car in the age of a digitally connected urban mobility ecosystem heading towards smart cities
  • Find out about emerging business models and new mobility concepts disrupting the future of urban mobility and challenging traditional ownership concepts
  • Take your chance and exchange expertise in our interactive sessions with other professionals and profit from extensive networking opportunities during the breaks and at the evening reception
  • Win the Contest: You have an innovative idea featuring Automotive Blockchain Technology up your sleeve that could impress GM? Then apply for our General Motors Startup App Contest
  • With 1 conference ticket you get admission to 3 international conferences on “Smart Cars & Urban Mobility”, “Autonomous & Electric Buses” and “Charging Infrastructure for Electromobility”
Smart Cars & Urban Mobility | VDI Conference

The 2nd internationalVDI Smart Cars & Urban Mobility conference will feature presentations and interactive discussions about the smart car and its position in the urban mobility landscape as well as contemporary developments in automotive technology, data and infrastructure. In an age of increasingly connected devices, vehicles and smart cities, this conference is ideal for those who want to be at the forefront of these developments. Including topics like innovative business models, new solutions from the mobility sector and the need for OEMs to react and redefine their traditional ownership approaches, you will have the chance for intensive discussions with other experts from the automotive and urban mobility sector. Also find out more about the topic of data sovereignty and the challenges present here in the areas of security and law.

Everything is smart & connected – And now?

You would be hard pressed to find a single area of technology in which digitalization is not making substantial headway. In an increasingly connected world, the emphasis is on ‘smart’ technology capitalizing on the possibilities offered by connectivity. Knowing that, it seems only logic that the automotive sector is undergoing a period of transition in order to stay competitive, redefining its position in an intelligent urban infrastructure on the way towards „Smart Cities“.

Be at the Forefront for new Mobility Solutions

As consumers move away from traditional vehicle ownership towards automated, electric and individualized mobility solutions, this presents challenges as well as opportunities not only for OEMs but for the entire urban mobility ecosystem, including IT and software providers, as well as city authorities, infrastructure providers and utilities.

All involved stakeholders have to learn that in this time collaboration across all verticals is key. At the VDI Smart Cars & Urban Mobility conference, you will be able to engage with experts, professionals and technological frontrunners in new mobility solutions, gain an edge in this fast-moving sector and find new solutions for your personal challenges.

GM / VDI - Automotive Blockchain Contest

The Challenge:

Blockchain technology is disrupting today business crossing several areas: from fintech to logistic, from food traceability to automotive. You have an innovative Blockchain idea up your sleeve that could impress GM? Your concept has the potential to disrupt the automotive business by leveraging this technology? Your idea covers any area of the automotive field (logistic, supplier management, mobility…)? Then apply for the contest and thrill us!

GM will evaluate your ideas concerning 4 main criteria. You should try to meet them best possible!

  1. Task Fulfillment & Grade of Innovation: Does your idea meet the above mentioned challenge and is it innovative enough to innovate the automotive sector?
  2. Technical Feasibility: Is your idea scalable? Which Blockchain technology is it leveraging?
  3. Impact: Is the idea solving a big issue bringing a leap in value?
  4. Attractivity to GM: Why is your idea better than others? What’s the economical impact expected?

What kind of contribution do we expect?
Please hand in a Pitch presentation showing the concept, how it works, a practical example, mock-up or demo (if available). Show how the problem is solved with a feasibility study and underline how to address the scalability issue. Please send your contribution to Leonie Bohnstedt.

You can hand in your contribution from June 10th to October 5th 2018. Deadline exceedances cannot be taken into account. GM will make a final decision after the expiry of this deadline.

All eyes on YOU! We will publicize you and put YOUR idea into everybody’s focus! Winning this contest means that VDI will give you the chance to introduce your idea in a keynote presentation to major leading OEMs and further high-level audience on our conference „Smart Cars & Urban Mobility“ in Amsterdam. A large audience will get aware of your innovative solution and this could as well be your decisive step and the vital boost for your company! GM as host of this contest is certainly interested in your product as well. Convince them and they might be interested in a collaboration. Also a trophy will be handed to the winner during our award ceremony.

You think you can do that? Apply now & thrill us!

If you have further questions concerning the Blockchain challenge, please contact us directly! Technical questions will be forwarded to the GM committee!

Conference Topics & Agenda

The main topics of the international “Smart Cars & Urban Mobility” conference include:

  • The Urban Mobility Ecosystem, Multimodal Mobility & Mobility Platforms
  • Connected Vehicles in intelligent Infrastructure
  • Legal Basics for smart connected Vehicles
  • Data Handling & Data Sovereignty in an Urban Mobility Context
  • The Urban Perspective: Mobility Challenges in Smart Cities of the Future 
  • Disruptive Automotive Business Models and alternative smart Urban Mobility Concepts

The agenda will boast of presentations given by internationally renowned experts and has been put together with the help of our supporting experts:

  • Gerhard Greiner, ALP.Lab, Austria 
  • Steffen Schaefer, NZ Transport Agency, New Zealand
  • Massimiliano Melis, GM Global Propulsion Systems, Italy 
  • Timur Pulathaneli ,Ford, USA 
  • Prof. Stephen Potter, The Open University, United Kingdom

Download Program PDF

28. November 2018


Registration & Welcome Coffee


Chair’s Welcome and Opening Address

Gerhard Greiner, Director, ALP.Lab, Austria

I. The Urban Mobility Ecosystem


Future Transport Scenarios: Urban Mobility

  • Future transport modes
  • Vehicles, infrastructure and services for urban areas
  • Integrating it all: Mobility as a Service

Steffen Schaefer, Urban Mobility Innovator, New Zealand


Exploring the Links between the Urban Mobility Ecosystem and new Transport Technologies

  • Increasingly dispersed travel across space, time and functions
  • Main Drivers: Changes in society, economy and increasingly digital lives
  • Changes in the urban mobility ecosystem due to new transport technologies

Prof. Stephen Potter, Emeritus Professor of Transport Strategy, The Open University, United Kingdom


Networking & Coffee Break


Alternative Living and Consumption Spaces - The Future Role of Cars
The smart mobility concept: Game changer for the automotive industry

  • Spaces we love, visit and encounter
  • I, the car: Rethinking my role in a connected service economy
  • Measure next: The strategic, economic and political impact of game changers

Dr. Barbara Flügge, Founder, Barbara Flügge Consulting, Switzerland


Integrated Mobility - Understanding the Business and the Ecosystem

  • Challenges in the mobility ecosystem: Redefining seamless mobility?
  • Show me the money - The business model
  • Experiences from Gothenburg and Stockholm

Hans Arby, CEO, UbiGo, Sweden



II. Connected Vehicles in Intelligent Infrastructure


Connected and Automated Driving with Cellular-V2X

  • Feasibility of key C-V2X use cases
  • V2X roadmap towards 5G
  • Standardization for cooperative ITS
  • Business model considerations and experiences from early deployments

Tim Wouda, MBA MSc, Head of Mobility & V2X Ecosystem, Ericsson, The Netherlands


Enabling new Mobility Experiences with Interior Cocoon Concepts

  • Selfdriving mobility allows new mobility experiences
  • Maintaining the safety level while enabling a mobile living room 2.0
  • Key role of passenger behaviour and interactions with the car and objects

Moritz von Grotthuss, CEO, gestigon – a Valeo Brand, Germany


Smart Infrastructure for Smart Mobility

  • From conventional traffic management to a new mobility infrastructure
  • Hybrid infrastructure solutions for drivers and connected cars
  • Importance of safety/security for data and communication
  • Frontend to traffic participants: The future of traffic signals and signs

Ernst Luckner, VP Research & Development, SWARCO FUTURIT Verkehrssignalsysteme
GesmbH, Austria


Distributed Ledger Technologies meet Future Mobility

  • Autonomous payment via Blockchain technology
  • Distributed ledger technology for secured mileage
  • Community approach within a global provider of sustainable mobility

Benjamin Sinram, Head of Digitalization & Technology, Volkswagen AG, Germany


Networking & Coffee Break


The Role of Roads in an autonomous Vehicle Environment

  • Role of roads and miss-match between autonomous vehicles and ITS
  • Why roads should provide data and leverage IoT based technologies
  • How roads can generate data, seamlessly and economically

Michael Dan Vardi, Co-Founder & CBO, Valerann, United Kingdom


Panel Discussion: Visions & Challenges of connected Vehicles: Disruptive Technologies, Infrastructure & Transformation


GM Blockchain Contest Winner
You have an innovative Blockchain idea for the automotive market? Apply for the contest!

Contest Winner and Marco Girotto, Lead Embedded Controller and Design System Engineer, General Motors, Italy


End of conference day one

Get Together
At the end of the first conference day we kindly invite you to use the relaxed and informal atmosphere for in-depth conversations with other participants and speakers.

29. November 2018

III. Disruptive Mobility Business Models


Mobility as a Service – The End of Car Ownership?

  • What would be as big as owning a car in the minds of individual consumers?
  • Major disruption of transportation will change the structures of business
  • Consumers shift towards MaaS operators that take care of their mobility needs
  • Today’s disruption can be compared to changes in telecom industry in the 80’s

Sampo Hietanen, CEO and Founder, MaaS Global, Finland


Autonomous Driving Mobility Platforms: Knowing the Destination

  • Platforms to direct autonomous vehicles and verify who is entering and exiting the vehicle
  • Fleet management for autonomous vehicles
  • Predictive maintenance to keep autonomous vehicles operating reliably
  • Car- and ridesharing: OEMs position for the autonomous service revolution

Armin Fendrich, General Manager EMEA, Ridecell, Germany


Insights from existing on-demand Ridepooling Services worldwide

  • Empirical insights how to launch and scale an on-demand transit system
  • Key learnings from over 30 million provided on-demand ridepooling rides
  • Software-as-a-Service and Transportation-as-a-Service

Jan Lüdtke, Director of Business Development Europe, Via Transportation, USA


New Mobility Services for City Centres

  • Electric automated shuttles and first last mile mobility
  • Policy drivers and outcomes
  • MaaS and the sharing society
  • Future mobility for cities and regions and the role of the authorities

Richard Harris, Director Europe, Ohmio Automotion, United Kingdom


Networking & Coffee Break


Disrupting Long-Distance Mobility by unlocking Sharing Potential

  • Short introduction of BlaBlaCar, as global leader in carpooling
  • Evolvement of business model over time
  • Chances, risks and outlook of sharing mobility

Sarah Groetsch, MSc., Marketing Manager, BlablaCar, Germany


Panel Discussion: Serviceiation of the Auto-Industry

Moderator: Steffen Schaefer, Urban Mobility Innovator



IV. Legal Basics for smart connected Vehicles


GDPR and the connected Car Data Exchange

  • Legal challenges for vehicle data exchange
  • Case study: Telematics insurance
  • Access to vehicle data: Ownership and control
  • The General Data Protection Regulation: Protection vs free flow

Freyja van den Boom, PHD Researcher, Bournemouth University, United Kingdom

V. The Urban Perspective: Alternative Mobility Concepts & Mobility Challenges in Smart Cities of the Future


The Singapore Story – Our Perspectives on Urban Mobility

  • Electric vehicle initiatives
  • Autonomous vehicle deployment in new towns
  • Intelligent transport system
  • Singapore’s vision for urban mobility

Shin Poh, Regional Director Europe, Singapore Economic Development Board,


Tackling the Challenges of data-driven Smart Mobility: Use Cases for the Brainport Region

  • Data driven policy decisions
  • MaaS deployment in smart cities
  • Smart city data and IoT principles
  • Privacy and GDPR aspects
  • Transparancy of algorithms

Niels Wiersma, Senior Business Consultant, Municipality of Eindhoven, The Netherlands


Networking & Coffee Break


Urban Air Mobility - Your new Departure Gate is your Garage!

  • The arrival of urban air mobility: Flydriving is around the corner
  • Air taxis & ride sharing vs. private ownership
  • Why did we choose the concept we chose?

Dr. oec HSG Markus Hess MBA, Chief Marketing and Sales Officer, Pal-V, The


Mobility Challenges for Smart Cities, don’t trip at the Kerb

  • Never have connected vehicles given such opportunities for the industry
  • The kerbside and its digital twin is becoming more crowded
  • Opportunities to empower cities and give compliant control to consumers

Ben Boutcher-West, Head of Mobility, AppyParking, Uited Kingdom


Conference chair‘s closing remarks


End of Conference

If you have any questions regarding the conference program or you want to become a speaker, please contact Leonie Bohnstedt.

Who is this conference for?

Attending the VDI Smart Cars & Urban Mobility conference is a must for professionals, management, experts and specialists working in the following areas:

  • OEMs & major Suppliers
  • Smart Mobility Service Solutions or MaaS  and Car IT Specialists
  • Software and Data Platform Providers
  • IoT Experts (focused on Mobility)
  • Telecommunications
  • Urban Planning 
  • City and Transport Authorities responsible for Smart Mobility 
  • Municipal Utilities and Infrastructure Providers
  • Urban Mobility Startups

The Framework Program – 3 Conferences for the price of 1

As a participant of the “Smart Cars & Urban Mobility” conference you will be able to attend the parallel international VDI conferences “Autonomous & Electric Buses” and “Charging Infrastructure for Electromobility” at no additional cost. The joint evening event on the first day of the conference is a perfect opportunity to establish new contacts and offers excellent networking opportunities. Attendants and presenters from all three conferences will come together in a relaxed environment with food and drinks.

Also don’t miss to attend our one of our three international Workshops, taking place the day before the conference and profit from an attractive package price:

Book now

You want to engage with international experts in Amsterdam, a global leader in urban mobility? You’re interested in how the urban mobility landscape and business models will change to accommodate smart cars, individual mobility demands and connected infrastructure? If you’d like to know how your company can stay successful given the changing environment in the wake of the digital transformation, book your ticket for the Smart Cars & Urban Mobility conference now.

If you are a startup or public funded / state owned enterprise you might qualify for a special discounted rate. Please contact us directly.

Eventnumber: 01KO910

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In case of queries, you can reach us here

You can reach us at:



  • Vector Informatik GmbH
  • Velodyne Europe GmbH

Experts of the following companies are supporting the conference:

Logo FordLogo GM

Hotel Reservation

A limited number of rooms has been reserved for the benefit of the conference participants at the conference venue. Please use the reference "181127VDIW" when booking your room by phone (+31 20 655 3131) or e-mail.

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