European project creates cooperation framework for interactive traffic management system


The public- and private-sector partners involved in the SOCRATES 2.0 project have developed the framework of a cooperative travel information data exchange that will be the basis for the European deployment of an interactive traffic management system.

SOCRATES 2.0 (System Of Coordinated Roadside and Automotive services for Traffic Efficiency and Safety) is a pan-European project that involves public and private partners developing smart traffic information and travel management services that will be piloted in the Amsterdam (Netherlands), Munich (Germany), Antwerp (Belgium) and Copenhagen (Denmark) regions, starting in June 2019.

International service providers, auto makers, ITS companies and road authorities are cooperating and sharing information in order to create new and better services for road users. The project will also provide the essential building blocks to prepare Europe for the future widespread use of self-driving cars, by integrating traffic information and navigation services within vehicles.

As well as offering smarter services for road users, the project partners are defining a model for public-private cooperation that can provide better traffic management. By exchanging and integrating all available information from road authorities, service providers and road users, it will be possible to create a complete and consistent picture of the current and expected traffic situation, and opens the way to develop common traffic management strategies, leading to faster, greener, and safer traffic flow.

In preparation for the actual pilots, the SOCRATES 2.0 Cooperation Framework has been delivered, which consists of:

• The Socrates 2.0 vision on public-private cooperation in traffic information services. The partners wanted to establish something new and not just improve an existing concept of cooperation. To do so, they recognized that a paradigm shift should be made from ‘managing and influencing traffic’ to ‘supporting people on their travel from A to B’;

• Elaborated use cases for services for road users, such as smart routing, actual speed and lane advice, and local information and hazardous warnings. These include a list of steps defining the interactions between actors and systems to achieve the goals;

• Options for cooperation of the stakeholders, to be able to realize the services by defining common goals for different levels of cooperation and the concept of an intermediary, based on the services and cooperation models. An intermediary could have a role in data exchange coordination, aggregation, fusion, quality control, and common situational picture. The framework describes a number of typical options for the intermediary role, to be selected and elaborated in the next activities of the project.

“This framework presents a first selection of options for cooperation and implementation of services. For example, a Cooperation Model matrix and different Intermediary types are presented. It is expected that for the different SOCRATES 2.0 pilots there will be no ‘one size fits all’ Cooperation Model and variations to the Intermediary types are possible,” explained Irina Koller-Matschke from BMW, who was project leader for the creation of the framework.

“The upcoming SOCRATES 2.0 pilots will experiment with different Cooperation Models and Intermediary types per use case, in order to experience more and learn the effects of different options. The results will be used to update the framework.”

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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).