Concepts of space-time in the digital world One of the remarkable facets of the integration between technology and social life is the capability of science, industry, and citizenry to see and implement new applications. They draw on an array of technologies, which, when combined in different configurations, have potentially significant and, sometimes, unforeseen impacts on broad patterns of human settlement, production, and trade. • Envision a world of flexible spatial alliances, new kinds of spatial organization for production and distribution, more time- and space-responsive forms of decision-making. • Possibly new systems of supply-chain management, new labour contract arrangements that alter commuting behaviour, and a renewed focus on just-in-time behaviour based on synchronization of resources and activities. • Convergence, compression, extensibility and trackability pose enormous potentials and challenges in the transportation sector. Because of the integration of different technologies (e.g. electronics, robotics, telematics…) technological progress in transport is expected to be exponential in the coming decades. The transport system in the 21st Century will be radically different from the one in the 20th Century. Real time information provided to/from travellers, vehicles and transport operators, infrastructure managers and regulators, together with enhanced computing capabilities, and electrification, will allow for automatized or assisted online smart transport management systems dramatically improving the efficiency, reliability and safety of the system. As much as logistics is already embedded into industrial production, personal travel is becoming also embedded into social and business activities – either by working or engaging in social interactions during the journey. Instead of safety, privacy will be the major concern. Transport and communication is becoming a highly networked system at all levels, from the human body to the global scale. The flows of persons and information, freight, material resources and energy, are increasingly interconnected and interdependent, to the point that physical distances are subverted and the connection to networks often matters more for interaction than the geographic distance (Castells, 2004). Four interrelated general concepts are fundamental to understanding the coupling between space– time-adjusting technologies and the processes that shape altered states of regional and community organization (Janelle & Gillespie, 2004). These include the following dimensions: Time–space convergence; Time–space compression; Human extensibility; Trackability. In combination, convergence, compression, extensibility and trackability have enormous potentials but also pose challenges to the transportation sector. One can envision a world of flexible spatial alliances, new kinds of spatial organization for production and distribution, more time- and space responsive forms of decision-making, possibly new systems of supply-chain management, new labour contract arrangements that alter commuting behaviour, and a renewed focus on just-in-time behaviour based on synchronization of resources and activities. In this sense, transport is affected by the dramatic changes all other network industries are also enduring. All of this being considered, the concepts and categories we still use in transport planning, inherited largely from the late 60s, will become blurred just because of technological and organisational changes. The difference between public and private, collective and individual, infrastructure and service, to name a few, are becoming less meaningful. Car manufactures begin to sell mobility services, large companies in the information, communication and energy sectors develop transport solutions such as hybrid self-driven mega-trucks moving through a dedicated motorway lane at night, or “electrified motorways”, and new companies emerge in the so-called “sharing economy”, challenging existing transport regulations worldwide. To better understand the transport system we have to rethink the concept and Value of Time in the context of time-space convergence, compression, extension and trackability, as well as to investigate other social and environmental values. Castells, M. (2004) The network society: a cross-cultural perspective. Edward Elgar Publishing Janelle, D. & Gillespie, A. (2004) Space–Time Constructs for Linking Information and Communication Technologies with Issues in Sustainable Transportation. Transport Reviews, Vol. 24, No. 6, 665–677.