Paul Mackie

Paul.Mackie@MobilityLab.orgPaul Mackie smaller

Paul has been Communications Director at Mobility Lab since 2012. He specializes in reporting, writing, editing, helping journalists, and speaking about how places can become vibrant through public-transportation initiatives.

For the eight years prior to joining Mobility Lab, he was Climate Change Communications Director at The Nature Conservancy and Director of Media Relations at the World Resources Institute.

He has also been a daily newspaper journalist at various outlets in the St. Louis area; a freelancer for the Chicago Tribune, National Geographic, and other media organizations; and a writer at the National Association of Counties. Paul has been quoted on transportation issues by USA Today, the San Francisco Chronicle, the Washington Post, NPR, and many others; has spoken at many conferences, including MIT’s Disrupting Mobility, Innovate Raleigh, and various state and national transportation events; and received the 2015 Excellence in Advocacy Award and 2013 Presidents Award from the Association of Commuter Transportation.

paul-speaking-at-techiesPaul is currently serving on the “Safe Routes to Healthy Foods Taskforce” of the Safe Routes to School National Partnership and on a panel that provides direction and guidance for disseminating research produced by the Transit Cooperative Research Program (TCRP), a collaboration of the Federal Transit Administration (FTA); the Academies and its Transportation Research Board (TRB); and the Transit Development Corporation, an educational and research arm of the American Public Transit Association (APTA). He is also a member of the Surface Transportation Communicators of DC.

Paul obtained his master’s degree in media studies and political science from Georgetown University and his bachelor’s in English literature and journalism from Southern Illinois University. On a personal level, he enjoys writing at his blog Pop Culture Lunch Box, tennis and other sports, playing and listening to music, and traveling with his wife Rachel, son Jackson, and daughter Zoey.

His first car was a Chevy Chevette. Now he bikes through three states to get to work. And his bike is a lot nicer than the Chevette.

Will growth of shared mobility make people more willing to share their own cars?

As many as 95 percent of trips in big cities could be shared with no more than a 5-minute inconvenience for riders, according to a recent report co-authored by Carlo Ratti of MIT’s SENSEable City Lab. Back in 2010, the Albany Times Union did some interesting reporting to delve into why New York State residents… Read more »

SXSW audio: How to Uber-ize public transit to save it

Our panel at SXSW in Austin last month, How to Uber-ize public transit to save it, agreed that there is a lot that public transit can learn from Uber in terms of selling the public on its worth. At the same time, we also agreed that Uber absolutely can’t replace transit. I moderated and asked the panelists (Doug… Read more »

Why would Denver RTD want its mascot to be a total jerk?

Yes, we get it, there are rude jerks on mass transit everywhere. But once again, it seems like the public-transportation industry is missing an opportunity. With the Denver Regional Transportation District’s ridership heading downward, couldn’t the system try inspiring people about its product rather than highlighting the things that people think are its worst aspects? A… Read more »

On-demand “flying Ubers” could ease East Coast traffic

What would happen to congested urban traffic if some trips could simply be picked up and moved into the air? That’s a question players from Uber to Airbus to NASA are seriously studying. But to Bruce Gunter, who often has to take unnecessarily long car trips from his home in Virginia Beach to Richmond to… Read more »

Our Daily newsletter: We think you should subscribe

Are you in the transportation demand management industry? Are you in the wider fields of public transportation, planning, or technology? If the answer is yes, then chances are that you care about how people think about their transportation choices. We’ve mostly gotten into our cars and driven alone for the past 100 years. But now… Read more »

DC employers recognized for leadership in commute contests, transit benefits, and more

A little healthy competition led a bunch of architects to rethink the way they get to work each day. It sounds so simple, but the science behind it was on display Wednesday at The Westin Georgetown, where goDCgo – an initiative of the District Department of Transportation – held its first Ambassador Awards ceremony. The… Read more »

Fully autonomous vehicles may make us safer, but could add to traffic

Split of benefits and costs could spark much-needed national transportation discussion Just what a future transportation system with autonomous vehicles looks like isn’t completely clear-cut. However, Kara Kockelman, a University of Texas-based leading academic on the subject, has predictions for their economic impacts. In a South by Southwest presentation last week, she put forth a… Read more »

Will people ever share rides in small and mid-size cities?

Cities and providers face challenge of promoting shared options against the ease of drive-alone trips This week our communications director Paul Mackie is reporting from South by Southwest in Austin, Texas. Why would there be much urgency in creating shared-mobility options in a place like Austin? RideAustin, Fasten, and others easily slipped in to take the… Read more »

Ford not just selling cars anymore

Business model shifts to include mobility options Anyone who caught Ford’s Super Bowl commercial might have some questions about the other modes – bikeshare and vanpool, most notably – that appeared next to the automaker’s cars. To Ford, it’s part of a strategic, ongoing shift. Speaking Monday at South By Southwest in Austin, Texas, Executive Chairman… Read more »

Breaking the mold in the quest for the ultimate connected city

This is part 2 of a two-part series on how advocates can create connected cities. Part 1 examined public agencies reshaping their transportation priorities. Pinellas County, Fla., just west of Tampa Bay, is one of several local governments in the nation to essentially embed Uber and Lyft into the local transit system. Transit riders can… Read more »

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