The COVID-19 virus is continuing to disrupt global activities on an unimagined scale. Industries that were flourishing have for the immediate term been decimated. At the forefront of these are those that are tightly coupled to transportation and transit. The behavioural shifts of working and playing from home that are being experienced will have longer-term effects in shaping the post-pandemic world. For example the reduction in movement-related emissions will benefit from fewer commutes and less long-distance travel, but offset by shifts away from public transit; greater home occupancy will create increased awareness of energy consumption and the potential to offset through conservation and co-generation activities, all while reductions in travel will be compensated by higher computing energy usage. Such movement from “commuting to computing” provides an opportunity to examine a number of consequences of possible impacts to industry sectors both likely to experience and be significantly changed in the mid to longer term. This paper will examine the potential future of these industries with a view to providing scenarios for future states and identify key triggers that will influence the outcomes.
Anshuman Khare, Athabasca University, Canada
Brian Stewart, University of Alberta, Canada