Spin Commits Up To $2 Million to Push for Micromobility Research
The latest funding would support development of latest micromobility technologies and solutions as part of research with the New 'Campus as Living Lab' (CALL) Initiative
Spin seeks to partner with major research universities over the next two years, and will invest up to $2 million in micromobility research.
TIER Mobility’s Spin is launching a new initiative in Micromobility Research by collaborating with universities who have a research interest in optimizing transportation outcomes in campus environments.The SF-based micromobility company has announced Campus as Living Lab (CALL) initiative. CALL initiative will receive up to $2 million in cash support for academic research projects on partner campuses over the next 2 years.
What is Spin’s CALL Initiative?
The CALL initiative builds upon a model that Spin established with Virginia Tech Transportation Institute on the University’s Blacksburg campus where faculty, researchers, and students used Spin’s shared e-scooter program to conduct research related to vehicle and rider safety. Spin looks to replicate this partnership with academic institutions, giving them the platform and funding to conduct practical research and contribute to the body of academic studies on this topic. More broadly, the objective is to improve the potential for micromobility to positively impact transportation outcomes.
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Large campuses are a great proxy for urban cores as they tend to be dense areas with high ridership. These environments are ideal “living laboratories” right on the doorstep of academic researchers with enthusiastic students who make excellent research participants.
How Spin Works?
Founded in January 2017, Spin has quickly emerged as a leading micromobility technology company in the US. In November 2018, it was acquired by the Ford Motor Company. Spin has been at the forefront of urban and campus mobility initiatives, as reflected in its commitment to make the city and campuses more secured through its “PROMISE” and “Mobility Data for Safer Streets” initiatives. TIER Mobility acquired Spin in April 2022.
CALL by Spin is the company’s first major initiative since acquisition.
Spin’s policy team will work with academic institutions and their faculty to scope and fund projects focused on advancing shared aims, such as modeshift, parking compliance, and safety. In addition to research awards, Spin will also provide and manage its shared e-scooter and e-bike service which will provide data to the researchers, at no charge to universities.
“The living lab research model works really well for us, especially on the topic of micromobility because of how popular it is as a service and as a research topic,” said Brice Nelson, Director of Corporate Partnerships at Michigan State University. “This partnership with Spin allows us to provide a popular campus amenity, while also creating research opportunities for students and faculty.”
As part of CALL, Spin is actively supporting research at Michigan State University where faculty and students are developing new ways to transform travel behavior through gamification. Research will also begin this fall at The University of Utah, where the project scope is still being determined.
“Our aim with the CALL project is to leverage student and faculty brainpower from top Universities to advance shared goals such as modeshift from single-occupancy car trips and improving parking compliance,” said John Lankford, Head of Campus Partnerships. “By situating the research within dense campus environments that see high student ridership, we can conduct experiments that offer high-quality research findings. We love that we can do this in a way that supports the student experience and advances the research mission of our partner institutions.”