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TRB ISFO 2023: Shaping the future of traffic management

Nov 28, 2022

The TRB ISFO Symposium will take place in Vienna from 26-30 June 2023. AustriaTech Managing Director Martin Russ talks about the event, which brings together an international audience from Austria, Europe and the USA.

The TRB Symposium on Freeway and Tollway Operations is taking place for the fourth time. Why did you bring it to Vienna?

Traffic management is an important topic when it comes to traffic flow and safety. In recent years, however, climate protection has also played an increasingly important role. It was important to us to take up this aspect in addition to the classic topics and to discuss it internationally. Together with the Federal Ministry for Climate Action, the AIT, and ASFINAG, we would like to use this stage for the entire Austrian community. After all, Austria is very active in the field of traffic management and can present exciting solutions and international success models. Therefore, the symposium is the ideal opportunity for us to position ourselves internationally and thus actively shape the future of traffic management.

To what extent can the TRB Symposium contribute to meeting the current challenges and achieving the ambitious goals - both nationally and internationally?

Improved traffic and mobility management can contribute significantly to achieving our environmental goals - even if this potential is often not apparent at first glance. The problem is that the term traffic management is often only equated with increased traffic volume or better traffic flow. Our goal, however, is to reduce precisely this environmental impact and to promote sustainable mobility. This topic is the focus of the symposium. We try to show new approaches to solutions from research and practice. These approaches should help us to enable an environmentally oriented management of mobility. Another central issue is the stronger involvement of the demand side. Sustainable and multimodal mobility offers - i.e. fleets in passenger and freight transport - are to be integrated into traffic management. And it is about a holistic view of our high-ranking traffic arteries with urban conditions or sensitive zones.

What is special about the upcoming symposium?

The special feature is the international exchange between research, business and administration on a thematic focus that is considered in many facets. The international framework of the symposium provides a unique opportunity to address topics and issues globally. The involvement of many international and national networks and actors underpins this. The collaboration between U.S. and European players creates a global context and thus opportunities for the domestic economy. This international exchange and the wide range of expertise make up one of the many special features of the TRB Symposium.

What are your own wishes and expectations for the symposium?

I look forward to the information on new approaches to solutions from research, insights into new trends and the exciting workshops in which the next steps and building blocks are considered together. When it comes to the future of transport and mobility management, TRB is the place to be for me. And Austria has quite a bit of experience and success to show here. By showing what the mobility community in Austria can do, we also strengthen our position in international relations. I am also looking forward to the valuable insights that will emerge from the many discussions and dialogs between research, industry and business. I hope that together with our international participants we will be able to answer the important questions that concern us: What new technologies are there and how can we use them sustainably? What data do we need? And of course the question of how all our ideas and visions can be financed. I think it is particularly important that we find a way to make the impact and its added value for society visible.

Who can benefit from the symposium?

The added value of the symposium lies in being able to address the most diverse aspects of a topic. Thus, there will be a corresponding takeaway for each stakeholder group: Policymakers and administrators will get a deep insight into global solution approaches and concepts. Operators will have the opportunity to share experiences on what works well and what does not. The symposium is also the ideal stage for research to present itself and find new partners. This is especially true for transportation science and mobility research. Here, it is possible to show how valuable the control of traffic is and which competencies will be needed for this in the future. We also invite students to participate in order to present their theses and forward-looking ideas and to network with an international field of participants.

Thank you for the interview!

Click here for information about TRB ISFO 2023.

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