This site has been archived on


Image Telematics Applications for Transport Image Deployment Information

Image History of the Deployment of transport Telematics

This section traces the background of Transport Telematics from the early European Parliament Resolution of 1984 to the way foward to widespread commercial deployment.

December 1984: European Parliament Resolution on Road Safety

In December 1984 a resolution of the European Parliament on road safety invited the Commission to propose appropriate research. As a result, background studies were conducted during 1985 and 1986 into current and future developments in informatics and telecommunications in order to investigate their potential application to road and vehicle safety. These studies, together with road transport research initiatives started within the framework of EUREKA, confirmed the Commission's view of the urgent need for a strategic programme in this domain.

June 1988: DRIVE adopted as a Community Research Programme

In 1986 the Commision proposed the Second Community Research and Development Framework Programme with the specific objectives of improving road safety, transport efficiency and environmental quality. Support from the Economic & Social Commitee, From the European Parliament and from the Council of Ministers, led to DRIVE (Dedicated Road Infrastructure for Vehicle Safety in Europe) being formally adopted in June 1988, as a three year Community research programme. The 72 projects included in DRIVE were carried out between 1989 and 1992.

1991-1994: Third EC Research and Development Framework Programme back to top

In April 1990, the third Framework Programme was approved by the Council of the European Communities. This led to the specific programme "Telematics Systems of General Interest" being adopted in June 1991. A workplan was prepared, in close cooperation with all the major European actors in the field of Transport Telematics, which identified the requirements for work in Transport Telematics.

February 1992: Treaty on European Union in Maastricht back to top

In February 1992, some 40 years after the birth of the European Community, the 12 member states signed the Treaty on European Union in Maastricht. It was ratified in October 1993 and the Treaty came into force in November 1993. The Treaty gave the Community and the European Parliament new powers. This included a mandate to strengthen the competitiveness of Community industry on the world market, through common policies and with an increase in research and development. It also placed greater importance to the environment and required the Community to contribute to the establishment of trans-European transport and telecommunications networks.

July 1992: Successor programme of DRIVE adopted by the Community back to top

Following the success of the DRIVE programme, in July the Community adopted the transport action (Area 2) within the specific programme "Telematics Services of General Interest". This follow-up of the DRIVE programme became the Advanced Transport Telematics within the Telematics Programme. The resources made available from the Community budget were increased to some 124 million ECU, compared with the 60 million ECU which had been allocated to DRIVE. With a further 16 million ECUs being added through the "strengthening of the 3rd Framework Programme" actions.

A call for proposals appeared in the Official Journal of the Community in June 1991, and the resulting bids exceeded the available resources by more than six times. Following independent evaluation, 57 projects were retained, most of which commenced in January 1992. The projects retained involved some 512 partners and amounted to about 18,500 man-months of work plus 1750 man-months from EFTA participants.

December 1993: White Paper on Growth, Competitiveness and Employment back to top

In 1993 the White Paper on "Growth, Competitiveness and Employment" presented a European strategy for the recovery of Europe's economy and identified the means for achieving it: investing in new technologies to provide efficient information networks and trans-European networks for transport and energy.

The information society is on its way. A "digital revolution" is triggering structural changes comparable to last century's industrial revolution with the corresponding high economic stakes. The process cannot be stopped and will lead eventually to a knowledge-based economy.

The Commission's White paper on "Growth, Competitiveness, Employment - The challenges and ways forward into the 21st century" acknowledges the importance of this process, critical to the future of European society. It develops a positive vision, stressing that information and communication technologies and related services have the potential to promote steady and sustainable growth, to increase competitiveness, to open new job opportunities and to improve the quality of life of all Europeans.

The White Paper on Growth, Competitiveness and Employment recognised that "the application of telematics to transport (road, maritime, air) is now becoming an important aspect of Transport infrastructures".

December 1993: European Council in Brussels back to top

In December 1993, the European Council meeting in Brussels, examined the White Paper on "Growth, Competitiveness and Employment". The Council gave its full political support and requested that reports be prepared by groups of prominent persons, providing concrete recommendations for action.

The European Council therefore created two high level groups for the two activity areas. The group for the information networks was chaired by Commissioner Bangemann, the group for the transport and energy networks was chaired by Vice-President Christophersen.

1994-1998: Fourth EC Research and Development Framework Programme back to top

The 4th Framework Programme adopted by the Council and Parliament in April 1994 includes Telematics as a major topic of research. In addition Transport relevant research is given more prominence.

The Commission in its proposal for the Specific Programmes (COM(94)68 of 30 March, 1994) includes Telematics research for all modes of transport as a major part of the Telematics Programme. Particular attention will be given to telematics systems as a contribution to the traffic management of railways, shipping and road traffic including inter- and intra-city traffic and multi-modal transport as well as for the creation of a harmonised, and finally unified system for European air traffic management. In this framework, the need to set pilot projects to validate the technical performance, operational capability and user acceptance of telematics applications is given priority. In addition the Specific Programme "Transport" will be undertaking the necessary measures to support the development of standards and to assist the implementation of Trans-European Transport Networks.

These developments will provide the strategic planning tools to support future decision making at a European level and to improve the efficiency and safety of individual transport modes with a view to achieving its optimum integration into the future multi-modal European transport system.

Work under the Fourth Framework Programme addresses amongst other things Telematics applications for advanced Vessel Traffic Management and Information Systems, Air Traffic Management, European Rail Traffic Management Systems and road, urban and multimodal traffic management systems together with value added Telematics services in all transport modes to support demonstration projects and future needs. The development, integration and assessment of appropriate telematics technologies will be a key element in the implementation of these new services and of traffic management systems.

June 1994: European Council in Corfu back to top

The European Council meeting in Brussels in December 1993 created two high level groups which presented their reports to the European Council meeting in Corfu in June 1994: "Trans-European Networks", Interim report of the Christophersen group, and "Europe and the Global Information Society", Recommendations to the European Council, Final Report of the Bangemann Group. The Council underlined the urgency for measures to create the Information Society and for priority actions in the area of transport telematics.

The White Paper on Growth, Competitiveness and Employment recognised that "the application of telematics to transport (road, maritime, air) is now becoming an important aspect of transport infrastructures". The report submitted by the "Bangemann Group" to the European Council in Corfu supported this. The European Council meeting agreed in principle the priority action areas for the application of telematics technologies, including road and air traffic management and other value added services for transport. In view of the importance and complexity of the issues raised by the new Information Society it urgently requested the setting up of a co-ordination instrument (one person at ministerial level per Member State). The Christophersen Group also saw the potential of co-ordinated implementation of new technologies for traffic management purposes and will study the potential for management projects in the different modes of transport based on a proposal from the Commission.

Bangemann Report

The report "Europe and the global information society - Recommendations to the European Council", illustrates the search for a consensus on this issue and builds on the White paper's (White Paper on Growth, Competitiveness and Employment) analysis. It highlights the need for an acceleration of the liberalisation process and the achievement and the preservation of universal service and the Internal Market principles of free trade and movement. Public authorities will have to set new "rules of the game", control their implementation and launch public interest initiatives. The deployment and financing of an information infrastructure will be the primarily responsibility of the private sector. At a Community level, in addition to legislative initiative, it will be necessary to better target available resources to contribute to the new objectives.

Finally, the report emphasizes the need for urgency in adopting its recommendations. The race is on at global level, notably US and Japan. Those countries which will adapt themselves most readily will set the de facto technological standards for those who follow. It also underlines the global nature of the issue, and calls for proper coordination mechanisms, and the advancement of international negotiations.

Christophersen Group

This Group has seen its task as primarily one of speeding up and facilitating the work already under way in the Union and Member States, so that clear decisions on priorities could be taken and projects implemented. It has been careful not to duplicate the work being done elsewhere, especially in the Council of the Union, but to aim at adding value to the work on implementing TEN's.

Specifically the Group set itself the aims of:

identifying priority projects and facilitating the subsequent work in specific project seminars;

accelerating the priority projects, notably by organizing project seminars;

addressing the project-specific and horizontal obstacles to implementation of TEN's in terms of the regulatory framework;

helping to clarify the financing issues and ways of encouraging private investment in the projects;facilitating rapid political agreement on the transport and energy guidelines.

24 October 1994: Council resolution on telematics in the transport sector back to top

The Council of the European Union issued a resolution on Telematics in the Transport Sector. It calls for action to support the Community policy to achieve a convergence or standardisation, where appropriate, of technical systems to make them compatible and interoperable between Member States so that they can as far as possible be used by road users and operators throughout Europe. It invites the Commission to draw up a programme for the measures required at Community level for the implementation of Telematics in the Transport Sector (action plan); and to support the work of standardisation in air traffic management by means of all suitable measures including research and development.

4 November 1994: Telematics Applications for Transport in Europe back to top

This communication provides a description of the actions required at the Community level for the implementation of Telematics Services for assisting the development of a more efficient, intelligent and safer transport system in Europe, friendly to the environment and socially acceptable. The document highlights the key role of private-public partnership in the implementation of Telematics tools and services for transport. There is a need for a detailed action plan to be established with a timescale for adoption of the priority actions in close co-ordination with other Community actions referring to transport.

The purpose of this communication is to define measures for the development of Telematics infrastructure in all modes of transport, together with proposals for deployment which can :

secure more efficient, safer and less polluting transport operations.

open the transport market for telematics services and products benefiting industrial efficiency.

encourage the promotion of new public-private partnerships for implementing telematics applications in the transport sector.

For this purpose this communication gives an overview of activities at Community level, on-going or envisaged, in the field of deployment of telematics systems and services for transport. The need for operational recommendations and for an action plan is emphasised, and a first outline of required actions by the Community is proposed.

The July Communication to the Council and the Parliament on "Europe's way to the Information Society", proposes a framework for the various actions needed for the promotion of the Information Society at Community level. This Communication on Telematics for Transport is one of the first application areas on which more detailed actions are outlined.

The overall agenda for Community actions in the area of Transport Telematics is therefore targeted on:

Development of the Telematics Infrastructure

Defining priority telematic applications in the transport sector

R&D activities related to Transport Telematics

Setting up a co-ordination framework for promoting the necessary actions.

19 December 1994: Council Resolution on the development of a Global Navigation Satellite System back to top

The Council of the European Union issued a resolution on the development of a Global Navigation Satellite System for civil use which will contribute towards attaining Community policy objectives, while improving the long-term and sustainable mobility of people and goods throughout Europe and transport safety. It invites the Commission to define the requirements of all potential users, to initiate support work, and to submit a draft programme taking into account national programmes. It also invites Member States to participate in the European contribution to satellite navigation and where possible and appropriate, to adopt a common approach.

29 June 1995: European Parliament approve the report on telematic applications for Transport back to top

The European Parliament approved the report "Commission communication to the Council and the European Parliament on Telematics Applications for Transport in Europe" (4 November 1994).

28 September 1995: Council Resolution on Deployment of Road Transport Telematics back to top

The Council resolution of 28 September 1995 asked the Commission to propose a general strategy and framework for the deployment of Telematics in the Road Transport Sector. To accomplish this task a High Level Group of representatives from the Public Sector in the different Member States was installed.

June 1996: Commission High Level Group Report on Road Transport Telematics back to top

The Council resolution of 28 September 1995 asked the Commission to propose a general strategy and framework for the deployment of telematics in the road transport sector. To accomplish this task a High Level Group of representatives from the Public Sector in the different Member States was installed.

As a follow-up of the constitutive meeting of the High Level Group held on 13 December 1995, the Member States representatives provided the Commission with their priorities (short and medium term) for Road Transport Telematics applications.

About the activities of the High Level Group the following statements were made:

Concentrate on making possible trans-European TT services (traffic management, information and value-added services etc.).

Ensure the interoperability of telematics services which support the Member States and the Community in the realising of their transport-policy aims. This will also enable the European industry to create a common market for telematics systems and the distribution of telematics services.

Where needed the adequate standards should be developed.

The attention of the HLG should focus on improvements in the overall transport system.

May 1997: Deployment of Road Transport Telematics in Europe : Proposals for Initial Actions back to top

This communication has been prepared in response to the Council's request to the Commission to propose a general strategy and framework for the deployment of telematics in the road transport sector. It has been prepared with the help of a High Level Group of representatives from the Member States taking into account the report on activities within the EU in the field of Road Transport Telematics and after discussions with industry and user representatives.

It is the first part of a general strategy for the deployment of transport telematics in Europe which will need to embrace all transport modes and their interfaces taking into account the rapid evolution of the Information Society. Its aim is to provide a framework for action at European Union, national, regional and local levels.

back to top