Abstract for: Driving The Future: A Management Flight Simulator of the Market for Alternative Fuel Vehicles

While the need to transition to sustainable automotive mobility is well understood, repeated efforts to introduce alternative fuel vehicles (AFVs) have had little success, even with substantial policy support. In the United States, a significant gap exists between ambitious regulatory goals requiring firms to introduce hybrid and electric vehicles, and consumer adoption of those vehicles to date. Several technical spreadsheet models exist that support regulatory analysis by government agencies. However, these models are opaque, extremely detailed and slow to manipulate, impeding learning about the feedbacks, time delays and non-linear dependences that govern AFV diffusion. Here we introduce Driving the Future, a web-based management flight simulator that provides an intuitive interface to explore the effects of public policies and automaker strategies on the future of the U.S. automotive market. We describe the structure and parameterization of the model, and then explain the user interface, before providing introductory examples of the simulator behavior. We close with suggestions for how the simulator can applied to develop improved mental models, building on our experiences in settings ranging from classroom teaching to workshops with automotive industry executives.