strategic research agenda for inland waterway transport published

During a high-level conference on the integration of inland waterways into the economy, NAIADES held April 7th 2011 in Esztergom (Hungary), the Strategic Research Agenda for inland waterway transport was presented to high-level government representatives and experts from almost all European inland waterway countries by the PLATINA (Platform for the implementation of NAIADES) project. The Strategic Research Agenda determines the needs and directions of future research activities within the European inland navigation sector.

Inland waterway transport is an obvious choice for moving freight in an energy-efficient, safe and environmentally sound way. Using the potential of inland waterway transport (IWT), which is currently under-exploited, could significantly contribute to achieving the EU 2020 and the EU transport policy targets. The realisation of this potential will however require co-ordinated efforts and contributions from all involved actors. Research and development are the drivers to enable and speed up innovation and modernisation and to contribute to a continuous improvement of IWT’s technical and economic performance as well as its environmental and safety standards.

Therefore, a Strategic Research Agenda (SRA) for inland waterway transport, which defines the specific research and development demand for inland waterway transport was set up.

The SRA is based on anticipated developments and scenarios, on a sound analysis of system characteristics, strengths and weaknesses of inland waterway transport as well as on the analysis of global and sector-specific challenges. It determines strategic goals and provides a comprehensive overview on required research demand and activities, clustered within 3 pillars

  • enhancing competitiveness,
  • improving environmental sustainability and 
  • managing growth and changing trade patterns.

The Strategic Research Agenda can be downloaded from the PLATINA webpage


The Strategic Research Agenda was developed by the European Commission’s PLATINA project (Platform for the implementation of NAIADES). The project aims to promote and strengthen European inland waterway transport. Within this project 23 partners from nine countries pursue this goal dealing with the five work packages markets, fleets, jobs & skills, image and infrastructure.


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