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CERTAIN
Central European Research in Road Infrastructure

CERTAIN is a CA that aims to facilitate integration of the new Member States and other Central European countries into the established research and development community of the EU. The project will provide the clustering environment for EC research projects on road infrastructure.

Tags: Road

Background

In line with the European Research Area (ERA), there are two key pillars of the Lisbon Strategy that foster structured, optimised and integrated R&D efforts in the area of European road research. These are the two European technology platforms:

  • European Road Transport Research Advisory Council (ERTRAC), which gathers all relevant stakeholders of the road transport sector, and
  • European Construction Technology Platform (ECTP), which includes specific elements on transport and road infrastructure issues.

Partners from the new Member States, and even more so from the other Central and Eastern European countries (CEEC), have contributed very little to these activities. The main reasons were lack of experience in European co-operative research, financial constraints (difficulties in obtaining national contributions) and poor comprehension of English by the users of the results, which prevented the main results of the European research projects being properly implemented.

This has been happening despite road transport being the primary means of mobility for all European people and goods, including the new Member States and the CEEC. It is crucial for the economic and social development of the entire continent that the road network is in good condition throughout Europe. CERTAIN will assist in overcoming these difficulties and pave the way for more efficient incorporation of the new Member States and CEEC partners into the European research activities.

Objectives

The main objectives of the CERTAIN Coordination Action are:

  1. To provide a platform for coordinated work and efficient dissemination of results of the two STREP proposals on road infrastructure, dedicated to the new Member States: SPENS (Sustainable Pavements for new Member States) on pavements and ARCHES (Assessment and Rehabilitation of Central European Highway Structures) on highway structures.
  2. To establish and reinforce links with stakeholder in the new Member States and CEEC by organising dedicated workshops and providing the key project deliverables in national languages.
  3. To set the route for more efficient incorporation of new Member States and Central and Eastern European countries partners in future European research by organising training courses for the research project managers from these countries.
The main topic of CERTAIN is road infrastructure
The main topic of CERTAIN is road infrastructure
Ales Znidaric

Description of work

The following tools will be applied to achieve these objectives:

  1. Formation of the CERTAIN cluster in order to:

    • establish and maintain efficient links between the new Member States’ projects and other relevant projects from the area of road infrastructure (Heavyroute, INTRO, NR2C, SILENCE, FORMAT, SAMARIS), and
    • register the end-users from the new Member States and CEEC, and organise their activities.
  2. One of the major reasons that the results of European research have limited effect in the new Member States and CEEC countries is the limited proficiency in English at the level of the end-users. This will be addressed through:

    • development of a multi-lingual web-based platform, to provide links with the end-users, and the means for consistent and efficient promotion of the results
    • organisation of regional workshops in national languages. The participation of end-users from the new Member States and CEEC at international conferences is far too low to allow for the efficient dissemination of European research results.
    • Translation of the key projects’ documents (executive summary reports) will bring the results closer to the end users and will facilitate their faster transition into practice.
  3. Organisation of project management training will recruit potential coordinators for major European research projects. At present, obtaining qualified people from the new Member States and CEEC for these positions in the area of road infrastructure is a serious challenge.

Results

The expected CERTAIN deliverables are:

  1. Project brochure, website and posters.
  2. Multi-lingual web platform for the clustered projects, in order to bring their results closer to the end-users.
  3. Establishment and maintenance of the database of end-users from the new Member States and CEEC, in order to collect and maintain information about experts from these countries in the area of road infrastructure.
  4. Organisation of five national workshops in the languages of the organising countries.
  5. Organisation of training programmes for managers of the research projects, to qualify people for the management of the future European research projects.
  6. Translation of the key reports (executive summaries) of the clustered new Member States projects in up to five different languages of the new Member States and CEEC to be easily understood by the broadest end-users’ society.
  7. Joint dissemination materials for clustered projects to facilitate spreading the results of the clustered projects at different conferences and workshops.
  8. Presentation of cluster activities at the main European transport research events, such as the European Research Arenas in Gothenburg in 2006 and Ljubljana in 2008.

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