Over two centuries, Europe has undergone the transformation from a rural society to an urban one. Nowadays, 80% of European inhabitants live in cities: in most European countries, the overall population is almost completely urbanised, both geographically and in terms of mindset.
In 2004, PLS launched the Sustainable Housing Observatory; the foundation stone of its sustainable development focus, which has subsequently gone from strength to strength. Much work on the fundamental issue of sustainable cities was undertaken in 2009, through publication of the study entitled Building Sustainable European Cities, which featured a section on mobility. Similarly, our team also took an interest in topics including the instability and depletion of the energy supply and sustainable consumption. It then seemed essential to spend some time looking at a sector which is faced not only with major challenges but also with opportunities for change, for political actors and the general public alike.