The conference entitled “Railway Research – the achievements and challenges” held last week in Warsaw was attended by over 200 participants, mostly a select group of employees from IK (Railway Scientific and Technical Centre) as well as the people strongly involved in cooperation with IK.
Mr Andrzej Zurkowski, Director of IK, welcomed Mr Cezary Grabarczyk, Polish Minister of Infrastructure and Mr Andrzej Massel, Undersecretary of State responsible for railway matters, as well as PKP Group’s top management representatives, academies, scientific institutes and international organisations represented by Mr Tadeusz Szozda, OSJD Committee Chairman, Mr Libor Lochman, Director-General of CER and Mr Jerzy Wisniewski, UIC Fundamental Values Department Director on behalf of Mr Jean-Pierre Loubinoux, UIC Director-General. The conference recalled the achievements of IK during its 60 year history and was the occasion to award people who had been involved in it. Now IK has to face R&D challenges, especially in helping develop Polish Railways today (HSL construction plans, modernisation of the PKP network in line with European technical standards, etc.).
Mr Wisniewski expressed his thanks for the invitation and congratulated IK on its achievements, pointing out its long-term involvement with UIC’s work, especially in the area of research and experts working within the various UIC working bodies. He presented UIC’s possibilities and challenges, recently shared with members worldwide. He focused on R&D activities recently developed by the organisation. He mentioned UIC’s participation in several dozen EU funded projects – highly recognised by the European Commission for the input as well as the project results, and went on to say that we are facing the challenges matched by EU transport policy and support worldwide innovation within a sector, helping to boost the competitiveness of the railways and define its perspectives within the next decades.
On behalf of Mr Jean-Pierre Loubinoux, who sent his apologies for his absence, Mr Wisniewski gave an illustrated “UIC book” to the organisers. The book traces the history of the organisation which is due to celebrate its 90th anniversary next year.