Brains wanted for innovative transport solutions
Speaking today at the International Transport Forum meeting in Leipzig, Vice-President Siim Kallas urged leaders in the transport and ICT industries to push ahead with innovative research into solutions to get people, and goods, moving more easily. He concluded by issuing a creative challenge to transport stakeholders: come up with an integrated, multimodal European travel planner. It would smooth the journeys made every day by millions of people and tonnes of cargo.
Some excerpts from his speech to the International Transport Forum:
- "The recent closures of European airspace show us: all transport modes should be interlinked, as part of one integrated system. The ash crisis led to more than 100,000 cancelled flights and more than 10 million passengers unable to travel. We do not want to face this situation again. In the event of major disruptions of one mode of transport, other modes should be able to assist"
- "Transport is an essential backbone of our economies and, indeed, of our society. My view of the European transport system of tomorrow is one that is highly integrated, efficient, cross-modal, resilient and low-carbon"
- "Innovation is not only about technology. It has also a soft side. Caring for one's passengers, clients, employees and their needs helps in identifying innovative solutions and new business opportunities. Service orientation is a must"
- "Interoperability and shared standards and approaches are essential – in all necessary freedom to compete and develop and fine tune sector-specific or regional solutions. Let compatibility be built in to sustain innovation. We are ready to deliver our bit at European level"
- Europe has a role to play here, "not by taking everything into our own hands, but by supporting the right framework conditions – the policy priorities, legal certainty, possibly the choice of generic ITS components to be shared or re-used, and agreement on a clear timetable"