Office of Student Life

Buckeye Leadership Fellows Program

Smart Columbus Challenge: “Drive Less, or Drive Electric”

December 7, 2017 by Staff

The Buckeye Leadership Fellows ’18 partnered with Smart Columbus in a “Drive less, drive electric” challenge to answer the question: What behavioral changes must occur to support new technologies and transit options and what are the most effective and timely strategies for influencing these behaviors?

By 2050, Central Ohio is estimated to grow by one million people. Currently, Columbus is highly dependent on single occupancy vehicles. Smart Columbus is asking residents of Columbus to “Drive less, or drive electric” as they build infrastructure and modernize the grid of the city. Through working with Buckeye Leadership Fellows, Smart Columbus is attempting to better understand the human variable that is involved in this process.

As the winner of the first Smart City Challenge, awarded by the U.S. Department of Transportation, Columbus received funding and a designation as America’s Smart City. With goals to shift travel plans, embrace the electrical vehicle market, provide inclusivity in transportation and to move Columbus into the future through reduction of single occupation vehicles- the Buckeye Leadership Fellows were up for an amazing opportunity.

The 23 fellows broke off into 5 teams and developed research-drive, and forward-thinking proposals that they had been working off for the past semester. The students presented to the Columbus Partnership, Smart Cities team. The winning team consisted of Ellen Antoniades, Kylen Bailey, Madeline Bogard, Zachery Burton and Caroline Corona. Congratulations to this team- your hard work and passion was clear!

We look forward to seeing how the student proposals can be incorporated into Smart Columbus going forward.