The Secretary of State for Transport has visited the University of Leeds to see the latest research work which helps the transportation sector to become more productive
In a two-hour visit Chris Grayling also opened the new £4m Institute for Transport Studies building on the University campus, which will provide a modern research and teaching space.
Enhanced spaces have been created for PhD and post-doctoral researchers, to ensure that the University is supporting emerging talent alongside its world-class professors.
The new building also marks 50 years since the discipline of transport studies was first established at Leeds.
We want to encourage young people to take up the many exciting and cutting-edge careers in transport, and I’m very grateful to have the chance to open the Institute for Transport Studies
During his visit to the University, Mr Grayling met with leading researchers and was told about how among other successes Leeds research has informed efficiency targets for Network Rail and the safety ratings of cars used by Euro NCAP.
Professor Richard Batley, Director of ITS said: “The latest generation of ITS professors cover topics reflective of the highly complex nature of our modern transport system, and we consistently strive to create new knowledge which benefits the public and private sectors. It was important to be able to explain our work to the Secretary of State, and to show how it can have a real impact on society.”
Mr Grayling was able to see first-hand how ITS research is addressing society’s transport needs in the face of rapid changes in environment, economics and demographics. ITS researchers had the opportunity to showcase ongoing research projects such as DISRUPTION; a project aiming to reduce the energy use and associated greenhouse gas emissions from the transport sector by looking at people’s mobility, including their travel and use of computers and mobile phones.
Other projects included research into safer cycling, climate change, energy security, technology and human factors in transport.
Mr Grayling said: “We want to encourage young people to take up the many exciting and cutting-edge careers in transport, and I’m very grateful to have the chance to open the Institute for Transport Studies. What I’ve seen of the research being done – there is something for everyone in this department. There is work that will influence local authority and national government, and can get businesses thinking about how to improve efficiency and safety.”
Photos courtesy of the University of Leeds.