Friday 4 November 2022

UIC Day held in Rome on 21 October 2022

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As part of the ongoing programme of High Level Exchange Meetings (HLEM) with member companies, a senior UIC team was recently very warmly welcomed in Rome at the very impressive Ferrovie dello Stato Italiane (FSI) HQ, Villa Patrizi.

Opening the proceedings, FSI Group CEO Luigi Ferraris underlined the importance of cooperation and sharing of experiences and technological know-how as crucial elements for the efficient evolution of the railway network. He went on to emphasise how very important it is that, collectively, the railway community seizes the opportunities that the current complex geopolitical and operational context brings with it. We are entering a new era of mobility, a new time, a paradigm shift and the beginning of a new phase after the pandemic and we must collaboratively, make the most of that.

The FSI team with around 60 senior colleagues from Trenitalia, FSI Group and RFI actively engaging in the meeting, set out the considerable program of investments which FS Group plans to make over the next 10-15 years. These include infrastructure upgrades and the development and implementation of new technological solutions. Key interventions were made Roberto Tundo, Chief Technology, Innovation & Digital Officer and Chief Strategy Officer Fabrizio Favara.

The UIC team was comprised of Director General François Davenne, Christian Chavanel (Director Railway System), Lucie Anderton (Head of Sustainability), Simon Fletcher (Director Europe and Chief Standardisation Officer), Sandra Gehenot (Director Freight) and Marc Guigon (Passenger Director). François Davenne highlighted the content of the recent UIC Manifesto. This document, published in July 2022, highlights the need to transform cities and connect communities; use clean energy, technology and innovation; promote inter-modality and seamless connections; and transform the customer experience.

Taking these as a series of building blocks, Passenger Director Marc Guigon and Director Freight, Sandra Gehenot, presented the current thinking in respect to the need to encourage a customer-oriented culture in the railways as we emerge from the pandemic.

In a combination of plenary and breakout sessions, other topics addressed during the day included the promotion of rail transport at global level, the current and future challenges related to mobility and sustainable development; sharing good and indeed best practice to improve technical and environmental performance; the development of all forms of international cooperation and the role the UIC plays in supporting members and the wider railway community through the publication of railway technical documents such as IRS.

FS colleagues were pleased to share with the UIC team the importance they place on having the UIC as a strong partner on which they can rely as a support for the delivery of their business strategy. Each member of the UIC team took part on one of the breakout sessions which focused topics such as research and innovation, sustainable mobility, including the challenges and opportunities arising from the circular economy, standardisation and development of the freight sector.

For further information, please contact Simon Fletcher, UIC Director Europe & CSO at

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