The European Rail Research and Advisory Council (ERRAC) met today in Paris for the first of their two plenary meetings in 2015 and elected a new Chairman and Vice-Chairmen for the Council.
During the plenary, Andy Doherty of Network Rail was elected as the new ERRAC Chairman with a three-year mandate. Mr Doherty has served as the interim Chairman of ERRAC since the beginning of this year after the previous Chairman, Josef Doppelbauer began his mandate as the Executive Director of the European Railway Agency. Prior to this, Mr Doherty served as Vice-Chairman of ERRAC from 2012, representing the railway undertakings in the ERRAC leadership.
Additionally, Nicolas Castres Saint-Martin (Alstom Transport) and Manuel Pereira have been elected as the new ERRAC Vice-Chairmen, representing both the Industry and Academia, respectively, on the Council leadership.
The ERRAC plenary was also the occasion for ERRAC members to discuss the future role of ERRAC, taking into account the European Commission and railway sector priorities. The European Commission (DG Move and DG Research) attended this event and reported on the Commission’s views for the future of European Rail Research, specifically addressing the status of Shift2Rail, Horizon 2020, and cooperation with other European Technology Platforms. Finally, Fernando Liesa from the European Technology Platform ALICE (logistic platform) attended and presented on the possible synergies between ERRAC and ALICE.
ERRAC Chairman Andy Doherty commented: “I would like to thank the members of the ERRAC plenary for their confidence. With the strong support of the ERRAC members, I am convinced that Horizon 2020 and SHIFT2RAIL can boost European rail research, allowing us to jointly face and master the upcoming challenges of the European rail sector.”
Jean-Pierre Loubinoux, UIC Director General, said:
“On behalf of UIC I am very happy that we could hold the secretariat of ERRAC during the previous chairmanship of Josef Doppelbauer, to whom I wish to pay tribute for our excellent cooperation .
I am now pleased to see a prominent member of our ROC community in UIC take his turn to chair ERRAC, at a crucial period for the development of research for the whole sector, namely Andy Doherty, also vice chair of our System Forum, to whom I wish the best success and assure of our support. Congratulations as well to Nicolas Castres Saint Martin as new vice chair.”
The next ERRAC plenary meeting will be held in November 2015.