2021 Annual POLIS Conference

The POLIS Annual Conference 2021 took place on 1-2 December in Gothenburg, Sweden.

The POLIS Annual Conference provides an opportunity for cities and regions to showcase their transport achievements to a large audience of mobility experts, practitioners and decision makers.


We were glad to organise this event in cooperation with the Urban Transport Administration of the City of Gothenburg. With a focus on innovation, sustainability and co-creation, Gothenburg hosts one of Europe’s most dynamic clusters within the field of mobility.


Conference programme

View the latest version of the conference programme here.




Agents of Change: Local Leaders Initiating Innovation

The opening plenary session highlighted the importance of policy-responsive innovation in urban mobility. The public sector is setting policy goals, tackling societal challenges and governing innovation. Meanwhile, the private sector is putting forward new solutions and cutting-edge technologies to help achieve those goals. Only through mission-driven innovation and by bringing in agents of change across different sectors will we be able to radically transform the urban mobility ecosystem in our cities for the better.

  • Welcome: Toni Orsulic, Mayor for Transport, Chair of the Urban Transport Committee, City of Gothenburg
  • Opening speech: Elisa Ferreira, European Commissioner for Cohesion and Reforms
  • Keynote: Anna Nilsson-Ehle, Chair of the Board, Vinnova – Sweden’s Innovation Agency

Our panel discussion featured:

  • Margriet van Schijndel-de Nooij, Program Director Smart Mobility, Technical University Eindhoven
  • Maria Strömberg, Head of Department Cluster and Innovation, Business Region Gothenburg
  • Barbara Stoll, Director Clean Cities Campaign, Transport & Environment
  • Françoise Guaspare, Senior Advisor, Ile-de-France Europe

The session was moderated by Malin Broqvist Andersson, Program Director at Drive Sweden.



No one left behind: Embracing Equality, Enhancing Equity

The closing plenary session discussed how we can make sure that the sustainable urban mobility ecosystem is inclusive and equitable and also caters to the needs of more vulnerable groups in society.

This includes reflecting on the continued instrumental role of public transport and its recovery beyond COVID, the potential of active travel, the opportunities or drawbacks of shared and digital mobility services, the 15’ city, urban vehicle access regulations, and much more. How to secure a just transition to zero emission, that is the question.

  • Opening speech: Adina Vălean, European Commissioner for Transport
  • Keynote: Karel Martens, Director of the Fair Transport Lab, Technion – Israel Institute of Technology

Our panel discussion featured:

  • David Dessers, Deputy mayor for mobility, City of Leuven
  • Nathan Ashley, Head of Strategic Policy – Equity & Safety, VOI Technology
  • Matthew Baldwin, Deputy Director-General, European Coordinator Road Safety & Sustainable Mobility, DG MOVE, European Commission
  • Mohamed Mezghani, Secretary General, UITP
  • Jill Warren, CEO European Cyclists’ Federation
  • Rita Jacinto, Programme Manager, Division for Pedestrian Accessibility, City of Lisbon

The session was moderated by Karen Vancluysen, POLIS Secretary General.

Watch the opening plenary session online

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Watch the closing plenary session online

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