The Detroit Mobility Lab, a new entity dedicated to making Detroit one of the world’s foremost future mobility ecosystems, today announced an initiative to create the Michigan Mobility Institute (MMI), which will focus on educating a new mobility talent infrastructure of professionals within artificial intelligence, robotics, cybersecurity, and other fields.
“The companies that will drive the future of mobility will be incredibly multifaceted and will require individuals with robust academic and practical backgrounds in artificial intelligence, robotics, and cybersecurity,” says Chris Thomas, a co-founder of the Detroit Mobility Lab and a long-time investor in the mobility sector.
“If the city of Detroit and the state of Michigan are serious about becoming one of the leading future mobility start-up ecosystems in the world, and I believe they are, we need to create an entity dedicated to producing professionals who will lead in these specializations. MMI would help build a mobility talent infrastructure of men and women who are second to none right here in our backyard.”
Almost $111 billion has been invested in startups across the future mobility space since 2010, according to a 2017 McKinsey analysis. The sectors that have received investment include cybersecurity, user-interface technologies, telematics, gesture and voice recognition, parking and mobility optimization, sensors and semiconductors, autonomous solutions, electrification and energy storage, vehicle leasing and fleet management, and sharing solutions.
“The need for future mobility technical and operational leadership is unprecedented,” says Jessica Robinson, a Detroit Mobility Lab co-founder and a leading voice on the potential of smart cities. “The city of Detroit’s forward-thinking approaches to innovative mobility pilots, in combination with the region’s current strengths in engineering and manufacturing, provide the perfect environment for an entity like MMI to create future leaders within the mobility sector.
“Cities like New York, Denver, and Pittsburgh have shown how public-private research collaboration can accelerate a local talent base. We at Detroit Mobility Lab envision the same thing happening here.”
Detroit Mobility Lab is planning to expand its team and form a steering committee for the MMI made up of local and global leaders from the public and private sector. The committee will be tasked with defining the ideal structure for the MMI and the optimal process for creation.