ITS-UK’s first annual Summit aims to tackle the barriers to new technology implementation


One of the USA’s leading Intelligent Transportation System (ITS) experts, Kirk Steudle, will be a keynote speaker at ITS-UK’s first annual Summit, which will tackle the issue of how to fund and apply the huge range of technologies currently available to the country road network.

Taking place in the west of England on November 27 at the Bristol Harbour Hotel, the new ITS-UK event will be a one-day thought-leadership summit that will bring together ITS operatives, suppliers, contractors and consultants from the public and private sector alongside those responsible for managing the country’s road network. As the voice of intelligent transportation industry in the country, ITS-UK is committed to ensuring that the Summit goes beyond examining what the technology actually does, to examining the barriers to its implementation. A number of high-profile decision makers from around the world will be attending the event and will be offering their experiences and solutions. ITS-UK’s annual Dinner and Awards ceremony is the night before, hosted by the organization’s president, Steven Norris.

Director of Michigan Department of Transportation (MDOT) and CEO of the American Center of Mobility (ACM), Kirk Steudle (above), will be the Summit’s keynote speaker, discussing how he used technology to improve transport in his state, how he funded it, gained support, and some of the pitfalls in its implementation. He will also give his views on the future.

Leading figures at a range of UK transportation authorities, including the Department for Transport (DfT), Transport for London (TfL), Highways England (HE), Transport Scotland, Traffic Wales, and Northern Ireland’s Department for Infrastructure, will discuss how technology projects get prioritized and funded, facing questions from the audience who are welcome to give their views and share experiences of when projects worked, and when they did not, to discover whether the process can be done better in the future.

The event will also host an Oxford Style Debate on whether the focus on driverless cars is good or bad for the ITS industry and the future of transport. Under the chairmanship of Andy Graham, a respected consultant, owner of White Willow Consulting, and chairman of ITS-UK’s Connected Vehicle Interest Group, debaters will include CAV critic, the veteran transport journalist Christian Wolmar, and CAV supporter Giles Perkins, who is future mobility technical director at the WSP consultancy.

“When we decided to introduce a new annual meeting for our members, I wanted it to be different from the long list of conferences that already crowd our working life,” explained ITS-UK’s secretary general, Jennie Martin. “We see great solutions week in, week out, that don’t actually reach implementation, not because they are not excellent, but because funding or understanding does not exist. This Summit will be looking at how we can change this. I promise it’ll be a lively, thought-provoking day, and not ‘death by powerpoint’.”

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Tom has edited Traffic Technology International (TTi) magazine and its Traffic Technology Today website since May 2014. During his time at the title, he has interviewed some of the top transportation chiefs at public agencies around the world as well as CEOs of leading multinationals and ground-breaking start-ups. Tom's earlier career saw him working on some the UK's leading consumer magazine titles. He has a law degree from the London School of Economics (LSE).