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TU Berlin

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Jessica Stock

Graduate Student of the 1. Cohort


Is there a new mobility culture due to the discussion about and the usage of electric cars?

The electric car is not only discussed in media as an innovation, but is seen by one specific group of users as a technology, which has been suitable for everyday use since long ago. They are engaged in a special user community working for the implementation of electric cars and the behavioral changes combined with it since the early 1990s. Surprisingly, from their point of view, it’s not the electric car itself, which is innovative; instead, it is the behavioral changes – albeit the electric car remains the central reference unit in its material and symbolic form. In this sense I analyze the community of private electric car users in Germany as innovators of social innovation – and not of technical innovation. I call these drivers Electromobilists. Two questions have priority in my doctoral thesis analyses: (1) How does the currently practiced mobility practice look like and which future mobility practice is anticipated by the Electromobilists? (2) How can the current and the future mobility practice be understood as a social innovation and how do Electromobilists develop the social innovation of a new mobility practice exactly? During the research process the concept of "ideological innovation practice" arised. It shows that ideology is the key mode of coordination.

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