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Road transport sector works together to make Europe’s roads safer, cleaner - and boost competitiveness

02.02.2005


Transport research must focus on the challenges of the future, such as keeping people and products mobile, improving road safety and energy efficiency, and making the sector more competitive. This is the clear message of the European Road Transport Research Advisory Council (ERTRAC) which will tomorrow unveil its Strategic Research Agenda for the sector. ERTRAC brings together all players of the sector - automotive industry, road infrastructures, local and national governments, NGOs, universities and research centres from across Europe. By defining common goals and deliverables for transport research, ERTRAC’s joint Strategic Research Agenda should maximise the impact of public and private investment, and ensure that research is fully geared towards the needs of the sector.

Commissioner for Science and Research Janez Potoènik stated: “We all want cars that are greener and cheaper to run. We all want to feel safer on our roads. By focusing on the research needs of the road transport sector as a whole, ERTRAC is bringing those goals a lot closer.”

Road transport is the backbone of the European economy, with 11% of total GDP. It is a major source of employment – and a highly research intensive sector. Within EU companies there is more investment in road transport research and development than in any other sector (24% of investment in the top 500 EU companies in 2003).



The ERTRAC Strategic Research Agenda will stress the fundamental role of research in meeting the transport challenges of the future. It analyses present and future trends, outlines ways to maximize research resources, and increase the impact of public and private research investments. It sets out detailed targets and roadmaps for research in the sector over the next twenty years. Research in the road transport sector supports EU policies such as the halving of road deaths by 2010. It encompasses expertise in technologies ranging from information technology to material science.

The four priority themes identified by ERTRAC for future research are:

  • Mobility of people, transport and goods - how to enhance mobility for all
  • Safety and security - how to design a safe and secure road transport system for all users
  • Environment, energy and resources - how to make road transport systems cleaner, quieter and more energy efficient
  • Design and production systems - how to ensure the competitiveness and sustainability of products and services.

    Patrick Vittet-Philippe | alfa
    Further information:
    http://europa.eu.int/comm/research/transport/index_en.html
    http://www.ertrac.org

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