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SHLOW – ‘Show Me How Slow’: Mobilising Evidence from Transport Research into Speed

Final Report Summary - SHLOW (Show me how slow: mobilising evidence from transport research into speed)

SHLOW was designed to have students from across different European countries develop and implement concrete actions to reduce speed in road transport. ETSC, the project coordinator, together with all the project beneficiaries started by delivering 57 university lectures in the 10 participating countries: Austria, Belgium, Czech Republic, Germany, Greece, the Netherlands, Poland, Spain, Sweden, and the United Kingdom. In each country involved the beneficiaries were responsible for selecting and contacting relevant universities and faculties to deliver the lectures. In total a wide range of faculties were included in the project.

The SHLOW lectures were a mean to recruit students to participate in the project (students were explained how to apply to take part in SHLOW during the lectures) but they were also an opportunity to raise awareness among students of the road risk associated with inappropriate and excessive speed in road transport, the environmental benefits that can be obtained through speed management, and current practices/examples of speed management measures. Approximately 1 500 students attended a lecture at their university. In total 102 students applied to take part in the SHLOW project (ETSC received 137 applications, 102 of which were completed with all necessary information to be considered), and 50 students were therefore subsequently selected to take part in the project.

The 50 selected students were invited to attend a one week training course called the 'SHLOW camp' in Brussels (two one week camps with 25 students each time were held: on the week of 20-24 April and 4-8 May 2009). At the camp guest speakers from various sectors were invited to lecture the students: academia, industry, civil servants, the police, NGOs. Field trips were also organised, such as a demonstration of the Intelligent Speed Assistance (ISA) equipped car developed by the University of Gent and a bike tour of the city of Gent highlighting the city's work on high risk sites management. The camp was an opportunity to learn but also exchange views and propose new solutions in the field of speed management.

Subsequently students returned to their home country to try and implement a small scale local speed reduction project with the support of ETSC and the SHLOW beneficiaries. This phase was called the SHLOW challenge and was the core of the competition between students. All these projects required students to approach local stakeholders (local authorities, universities, schools, local companies etc.) who then accepted or refused to implement the students' projects. The efforts of the students were therefore both technical (developing a speed reduction solution) but also political (campaigning/lobbying a stakeholder to agree to put their solution into practice). This was the real competitive aspect of the project (i.e. the students who would develop the best solutions and convince someone to implement it would effectively have a chance to be awarded at the end of SHLOW).

In total, following a withdrawal rate inherent to working with students, 28 students managed to produce final reports thus effectively staying committed to the project until its completion. All final reports produced by the students are accessible on this page http://www.shlow.eu/the-shlow-forum/. This led projects that were fully or partially implemented, and a few that are also under consideration for being implemented in the near future despite the completion of SHLOW. All these projects can therefore be considered to have had positive societal impacts. These projects are all made available to the public domain and can therefore be used as sources of inspiration for duplication across Europe.

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