The International Rail Forum & Conference (IRFC) is a notable event in the international railway sector’s calendar, bringing together top managers, railway and logistics experts, customers, prominent politicians and institutions from across Europe. The 6th IRFC will be held in Prague from 22 to 24 March 2017 (Wednesday to Friday) at the Clarion Hotel Prague with the motto: “Let’s make European Railway EASY!” The conference languages with simultaneous interpreting will be English, Czech and Russian.
In March 2017, IRFC will continue the tradition of the railway experts’ convention, which began in 2008. During that time scores of eminent experts have commented on different current issues and problems within the given period. Once again, the main themes of the upcoming conference will be projects and trends that are hotly debated of late.
Conference participants will without doubt be interested in the effect and impact of legislation on their everyday practice. Debated topics will cover liberalisation, standardisation, competitiveness and sustainability of rail transportation and will no doubt be mentioned in the introductory section by the prominent representatives of international organisations and institutions such as EUAR (European Union Agency for Railways), UIC (International Union of Railways), OSŽD (Organisation for Co-operation between Railways), UNIFE (Association of the European Rail Industry), CER (Community of European Railway and Infrastructure Companies) and Shift2Rail (Joint Undertaking for the European Rail Research and Innovation). These establishments are the conference patrons together with the Ministry of Transport of the Czech Republic and Economic Committee of the Czech Parliament.
One of the main topics will be digitisation; networked Digital Single Market is one of the first two priorities of European Union policy where the use of the opportunities offered by the digital technology these tools, particularly in the transport industry, may improve utilisation of existing resources and the everyday life of people. IRFC will acquaint participants with the current opportunities, challenges, real examples of implementation, and enable representatives of major organisations and industry players to present their strategy for digitisation.
Another current topic included in IRFC 2017 is interoperability and implementation of TAF/TAP TSI. Standardised information exchange between participants in railway transport is under the Regulation of the European Commission and a binding implementation plan was also formulated whereby the railway operators, infrastructure managers and wagon owners shall be required to communicate with each other on the basis of the said standards. IRFC will bring this topic up to date, present examples of relevant software products and also specific cases of the TSI implementation in practice.
Traditional block of lectures will be focused on innovations in technology of transporting packages, special consignments and dangerous goods by rail, Single Wagon Load, safety, monitoring, etc. Conference participants will also welcome the opportunity to learn what’s new in Asia-Europe shipments and their needs, further trends and future.
Information relating to the ongoing and completed research and innovation programme projects will without doubt be interesting, outlining the practice of using a variety of options of financing their activities and intentions, also focusing on Central and Eastern Europe. Projects within the EUREKA, Horizon 2020, and particularly Shift2Rail will be presented.
The conference programme will be complemented by the discussion forum with contributions from the prominent personalities of European transport policy and railway institutions, which will be held on Tuesday, 21 March 2017. Integral parts of the conference are the established accompanying exhibition and events, the first day’s gala evening and the Czech Evening at the end of the second day. A specialised excursion during the third day concludes the three-day programme.
Online registration is available at this link: http://irfc.eu/en/registration/
Those who wish to keep up with current developments in rail transportation should attend IRFC 2017.