– Re-calibrating the Qld taxi industry

Richards, C. (June, 2016). Re-calibrating a sustainable future Queensland taxi industry: An inquiry into the strategic requirements of an optimal ‘win-win’ solution to the continuing crisis, Industry discussion paper for the Qld government’s OPT Review, Commissioned by the Queensland Taxi Owners and Drivers Welfare Association. FULL REPORT HERE

Abstract: The taxi industry in Queensland is facing a serious crisis of future survival linked to the state government’s move to copy other Australian states and legalise Uber’. In this paper we will both explore the relevant background to the crisis and also outline a sustainable solution to the continuing crisis. On the basis of an independent sustainability analysis applied to the industry, we have proposed here a re-calibrated state taxi industry model which should be a win-win outcome for all local stakeholders and especially the Queensland public. This model does not oppose the idea of ‘ridesharing’ but actually embraces this as well as the opportunities of genuinely innovative change. However, our model of a ridesharing option under the aegis of the Queensland taxi industry shows how this can be a key to ‘not just surviving but thriving’ for existing taxi operators. It also provides a basis for avoiding the destructive as well as unfair Uber model of disruption along with a related imperative of predatory off-shore profiteering and tax evasion. It will outline the regulatory as well as practical formula for the kind of ‘level playing field’ which should be the right of any viable local industry in the state. The inquiry here involves two stages that cut across conventional report approaches which tend to produce mere or ad hoc ‘lists of recommendations’ often based on selective and de-contextualized ‘stakeholder feedback’. The first stage is to achieve a balanced perspective on and understanding of the range of related key issues involved. This involves ‘cutting through’ common misconceptions, selective perspectives, and any related ‘hidden politics’.  The second stage or process of outcomes-based complex problem-solving then involves projecting a reasonable outcome and optimal solution in the circumstances