Nothing but praise for TRA2018 from member organisations

We asked the European co-organising and supporting organisations to give their overall impressions of TRA2018 and here are the replies that we have received:

Clara de la Torre, Director of the Transport Directorate of the European Commission’s Directorate-General for Research and Innovation

According to Clara de la Torre, Director of the Transport Directorate of the European Commission’s Directorate-General (DG) for Research and Innovation, which was a co-organiser of TRA2018, “TRA2018 represents a step further towards the transformation of transport to ensure clean, safe, automated and competitive mobility for all.  I was pleased to see highly qualified and active participants, and to be inspired by visionary messages from the transport community”.


Henrik Hololei, Director-General for Mobility and Transport

And according to DG Mobility and Transport’s Director-General, Henrik Hololei, “TRA 2018 was extremely successful in bringing the whole transport community – public authorities, industry, innovators and researchers – together. As the largest European transport research event, it was an excellent opportunity for the whole EU transport sector to discuss innovative ideas, technological solutions and research results leading to new business models. Together we would be able to better shape the future of transport.”


Steve Phillips, Secretary General of CEDR

As a founding organiser of TRA,  the Conference of European Directors of Roads (CEDR) expressed its gratitude to the Austria hosts of this years’ edition.  Steve Phillips, Secretary General of CEDR, commented that “Under their able organisation, TRA was shown again that it is not just another conference,  but an arena for dialogue with key stakeholders.  This was exemplified by the workshop on Open Data between the member country Director-Generals, the European Commission, ACEA and ENCORD as well as the ‘beyond R&I funding’ session with INEA.  The development of TRA is assured under our Finnish colleagues for 2020 and the commitments from Portugal and Ireland for the future”.


Xavier Aertsens, Director of ERTRAC

The Road Transport technology platform ERTRAC was highly involved in the TRA2018, with high participation of its members and providing speakers in many sessions. Xavier Aertsens, Director of ERTRAC, stated ” The 2018 edition in Vienna is considered as a clear success: participation was high and the key topics were addressed, with involvement of researchers and high-level representatives of the industry and of the European Commission and national authorities. Major topics for innovation such as Automation, Digitalisation and Electrification of transport, were addressed like they need to be: as challenges requesting a joint effort of public authorities and the private side. In this time of preparation of the next European Framework Programme for Research (FP9), the TRA2018 provided the right setup to exchange views on the next collaborative R&D that should take place at European level. The many European projects that were exhibited at the conference could show how European funded research is delivering results and is supportive of these major challenges to improve the mobility of tomorrow”. Click here to read ERTRAC’s  highlights of TRA2018.


Andy Doherty, Chairman of ERRAC

ERRAC – the European Rail Research Advisory Council would like to warmly thank the Austrian hosts and the European Commission for the 2018 edition of the Transport Research Arena organised in the beautiful city of Vienna last month. During the event, the rail sector was well represented as there were many rail stakeholders who attended the event as well as several rail-related stands in the exhibition area. Moreover, rail stakeholders actively contributed to TRA2018 by participating in many sessions to promote the rail sector’s vision for the mobility of the future and by presenting the outputs of many European rail research projects including the Shift2Rail projects. ERRAC Chairman, Andy Doherty underlined that: “TRA2018 was very well organised and enabled rail stakeholders to share their vision for the mobility of the future with representatives of other transport modes, researchers and decision makers. TRA was a key milestone for ERRAC in the preparation of the next European Research Framework called Horizon Europe as ERRAC officially presented its new RAIL 2050 Vision document, which is the long-term strategy of the rail sector for Research and Innovation with at its heart the Digitalisation of rail transport.”


Henk Prins, Chairman of Waterborne

The Waterborne Technology Platform would like to thank the hosts for a well-organised TRA 2018. Waterborne Chairman Henk Prins: “In the plenary sessions, we have had good debates with all transport modes on the future of transport and transport research. The waterborne sector was well represented in panels and discussions, reflecting the growing importance of waterborne transport for the whole transport system. In dedicated sessions, we discussed the future of waterborne transport with representatives from the European Commission, member states and industry. All wonderfully facilitated by our very able hosts. A big thanks to Austria and looking forward to the Finnish TRA in Helsinki!”



The Alliance for Logistics Innovation through Collaboration ALICE, was highly involved in the organisation and development of TRA2018. TRA is a unique opportunity to engage European Commission, Member States and all transport and infrastructure community to share and build up our vision looking forward to a truly integrated transport system with a user-centric approach. ALICE recently embraced the Zero Logistics Emissions target and looks forward to driving its agenda to this end. On top of all modal and vehicle developments, a lot of efficiency and environmental quick gains could be leveraged through new logistics concepts, some of them envisioned within the physical internet concept. This quick wins could drive our industry faster to zero emissions as required to honor Paris COP 21 agreement. ALICE would also like to thank EU funded projects AEOLIX, CLUSTERS 2.0, CORE, LEARN, LOGIMATIC, NOVELOG, SELIS and SYNCHRONET for their support and engagement within ALICE TRA Booth. Click here to read ALICE  highlights of TRA2018.


Statements from the new members

Christoph Schneider, Co-Chair of Strategy Integration Board and Mobility Working Group of ACARE

For the first time in TRA’s history, aviation was officially represented at TRA2018 in Vienna with the aviation technology platform ACARE. Said Christoph Schneider, ACARE Co-Chair Strategy Integration Board and Mobility Working Group, “Aviation decided to get involved as this event was considered to be a  unique opportunity to discuss the integration of the air transport system into the entire sustainable, reliable, comfortable, affordable, safe and secure transport system. Modal research is still needed to optimise technologies and reduce environmental impact, but great efficiencies can be achieved and progress made by leaving the silos behind and addressing common challenges together. Customers do not think in transport modes, they want mobility. Our expectations for TRA2018 were fully met or even exceeded – it was a very interesting, successful and high-quality event. Thanks a lot to the Austrian hosts for their outstanding dedication and support to make this a great event. We also thank all colleagues involved in preparing TRA2018 for their warm welcome of aviation. Our participation really paid off – we feel that we could contribute to TRA2018, but we also learned a lot from and about the other modes and our common challenges. We look forward to continue our involvement and the cooperation with Finland for TRA2020”.


Alain Zarli, Secretary General of ECTP

According to Alain Zarli, ECTP Secretary General, “the construction technology platform ECTP considers that TRA is the only place where, at the same time, all transport modes and logistics meet together with constructors and operators. As such, TRA is the true forum where cross-cutting and integrating views about transport and infrastructure are discussed and aligned. This has been an evidence in TRA2018 in Vienna, which demonstrated a quite good organisation and easy location, along with an impressive set of attractive sessions, events, and booths – allowing fruitful interactions leading to future closer links and collaborations with transport associations and platforms. For ECTP, attending for the first time as full TRA member and organiser, it was the perfect opportunity to keep on gaining experience about the suite of TRA conferences, and the association is now looking forward to the next conference to be organised in Helsinki in 2020”.



Finally ETRA, the European Transport Research Alliance, which also took part in TRA for the first time as full TRA member and organiser, would first like to thank the Austrian hosts for the excellent organisation of TRA2018; this conference marked a new major step in its development and recognition as The key European event for transport research. ETRA, platform for the five main European transport research Associations working together to developing the ERA in Transport, is pursuing the objective to support the TRA Conference. In that context, the Alliance was glad to bring its voice to all aspects of the Conference settings, from strategy to organisational, and not least to the scientific aspects. Such active engagement successfully created more awareness of the TRA to the European transport research providers community as a not-to-be-missed event; it also brought more academics and researchers to attend, and to present and discuss their project and work with decisions-makers and key industries players. ETRA was particularly pleased to see so many scientific and technical sessions addressing key transport topics being so well attended and of so good quality. The Alliance is committed to a continued support, together with other supporting organisations, for a successful Conference in 2020 in Helsinki.



Last updated : 04/06/2018