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Mapatón CDMX

Mapatón CDMX is a collaborative project between the Mexico City government and its citizens whose objective is to create an open database with valuable information regarding the City’s bus transit system. This last is a highly complex and decentralized network that is typically run by private operators. Every day 30,000 minibuses, buses and vans make 14 million trips in Mexico City. The goal of Mapatón was to map out approximately 1,400 trajectories that provide mobility services to 14 million citizens every day. Mapatón invited individual citizens and collectives to participate recording their public transport rides using the app developed by the Lab with the partners collaborating on the project. The users had to map out their route according to their respective transport service (e.g. bus, minibus, mini wagon, etc.). In order to encourage participation, the LabCDMX devised a game in which points were given to the first five papers of a certain route; the three participants with the most points were awarded prizes such as electronic device or cash sums. The contestants had about three weeks to map their routes, the results were analyzed and published a month later on the digital platform of the LabCDMX.

As a test case in civic innovation and crowdsourcing mechanisms, the project created an alliance between the Ministry of Transportation of Mexico City (SEMOVI), the Center for Transportation Transfers (CETRAM) and the Lab for the City (LabCDMX). In addition to these government agencies, civil society organizations such as Ally, CTS Embarq, ITDP México, Krieger Electronics, M+urbano, Planeación & Desarrollo, Transconsult and Urban Launchpad also participated in the project’s design. All parties joined in the hopes of creating a study directed toward the improvement of public transportation by creating the first open database of its type. The database could be used in government decision-making processes to develop public transportation policies that foster a safer and more efficient transit system. However, the platform can also be accessed by academics, start-up businesses and activist groups, to encourage their contribution to improving the quality of life for citizens on their daily commutes.

Mapatón is a paradigmatic project that is currently being replicated in Cairo and other large cities. It was a strategy that tackled a wicked problem for the city: the lack of information on the routes of more than 30,000 mini buses in operation. Mapatón helped solve a pressing matter for the city and strengthened the trust and cooperation between different sectors. Another project that strengthens intersectoral cooperation is the designation of Mexico City as World Design Capital 2018, an effort that in order to be accomplished had to be propelled by a network of distinct actors. Mexico City plans to impact design policy through this international designation with projects that influence working systems as complex as the Metropolitan Subway.

El Mapatón es un proyecto paradigmático que actualmente se está replicando en el Cairo y en otras ciudades interesadas. La primera base de datos pública, mundial y desarrollada en comunidad fue una estrategia coordinada por el Laboratorio para la ciudad en 2l 2016 por medio de un proceso de pensamiento creativo e integral, que abordó un problema complejo para la ciudad: la falta de información sobre las rutas de más de 30,000 microbuses en operación. El grupo multidisciplinario constituido por la sociedad civil, la academia y los creadores diseñó la app que mediante un proceso de ludificación que motivaba a los ciudadanos mientras mapeaban sus propias rutas. El Mapatón solucionó no solamente cuestiones urgentes para la ciudad, sino que fortaleció la confianza y la cooperación entre diferentes sectores. Ahora, la metodología del Mapatón se está replicando en otros proyectos gubernamentales para reunir a todos los diferentes actores. Otro proyecto que fortalece la cooperación intersectorial es la designación de la Ciudad de México como la Capital Mundial del Diseño 2018, un esfuerzo que para cumplirse tuvo que ser impulsado por una red de distintos actores. La Ciudad de México planea impactar el diseño de políticas a través de esta designación internacional con proyectos que influyen en los sistemas de trabajo tan complejos como el metro.

Project name Mapatón CDMX: Design for the Greater Good
Period 2015
Contributor LabCDMX, Mexico City Ministry of Mobility and PIDES Social Innovation
Location Mexico City Metropolitan Area