Yesterday, Wednesday 22 March, ERTICO-ITS Europe welcomed its Partnership to attend the first FOCUS ON of the year, an event organised in collaboration with ERTICO partners DEKRA and SAE International. Setting the scene for the 2023 series of events, and the opening of the discussion on Mobility Standards, Joost Vantomme, CEO of ERTICO, highlighted the important work on ‘Connecting the dots’. This is what ERTICO is undertaking with its Partners across the entire ecosystem through innovation and deployment projects, thought leadership and advocacy as well as the yearly ITS Congresses.

Following the introduction by Agne Vaitekenaite, ERTICO Senior Partnership & Marketing Officer, who acted as Master of Ceremonies for the day, Pier-Francesco Sammartino, Policy Officer, DG GROW, European Commission, delivered a keynote on the new European standardisation strategy, by which the European Commission launched a new High-Level Forum (HLF) on European standardisation, a re-scoping of the governance and a recognition of new areas where Europe is leading including Artificial Intelligence (AI), privacy and cyber security. He also emphasised that standardisation is the silent foundation of the European Single Market that celebrates its 30th year in 2023.

Representatives from DEKRA, SAE International, Autostrade Per l’Italia, and five of ERTICO’s close cooperation partners, IEEE, Volkswagen-CARIAD, AVERE, Graz University of Technology, Ideas Forward as well as the European Commission, were invited to exchange ideas and share their passion on this strategically important topic. John Tintinalli, Europe General Manager, SAE International, reinforced the importance of these events, “Attending an event like this is very important for our strategy of amplifying the voice of Europe at international stage, especially when it comes to standardisation.”

The first panel on ‘Standardisation processes – a means to an end’, moderated by András Csepinszky, Director of Advanced Automotive Technology at ERTICO partner NNG, asked the panellists to comment on why standards matter. The panellists discussed key aspects of keeping open the possibility for future dialogues in which contribution and collaboration are key to leverage the joint work on standardisation. Thomas Jäger, Head of Technology Technical Service Management, DEKRA, and ERTICO Supervisory Board member, shared his view on the necessity of standards in ITS mobility and stressed that “Mobility standards are essential to ensure safety, security and sustainability in scalable ITS ecosystems”.

ERTICO colleague, Peter Schmitting, Innovation & Deployment Manager, moderated the discussion that followed on the second panel of the day, on ‘Standards & Legacy’. The panellists discussed the main standards currently recognised as State of the Art and how these were built on the legacy (or the lack of it) in the field of standards in digitalisation of safety testing, energy consumption measurement, traffic management by road operators and measuring CO2 emissions in logistics operations. The panellists also called for instrumental elements of connecting standardisation across interoperability interfaces whilst looking at the importance of developing future-proof methodologies, building on EU-funded project results for future research and innovation. They also reaffirmed that standardisation is needed for all cross-sector activities, from the use and availability of data to improve traffic management and road safety to the advancement of e-mobility technologies in decarbonising transportation.

In the afternoon, the FOCUS ON attendees explored three ERTICO Partnership projects and platforms: under NAPCORE, 5GMETA and FENIX Network. These ERTICO activities bring standardisation into real-life use cases, and for each session, participants heard presentations given by the ERTICO coordinators and activity leaders highlighting the lessons learned and the real experience of deploying innovation on the ground. The FOCUS ON participants had the opportunity to join the presentations of more than one of these activities.

The final discussion, moderated by Isabelle Vandoorne, Deputy Head of Unit, Research and Innovation & Urban Mobility, DG MOVE, European Commission, covered ‘EU Standardisation Action & Impact on Users’. The panellists explored the concept of Users, as they could be both the end users and also the public and private stakeholders using standardisation. They stressed the need to bring users perspectives into standardisation and for companies to make use of standards and the resulting interoperability in order to scale up. Sustainability has become a new focus in this field.

To conclude this day, Mr Vantomme thanked the  DEKRA and SAE International for their support in organising this important event. He highlighted the key message coming from each panel, from understanding standards, and important governance and regulation aspects to the empowerment of users and the impact of standards for our mobility and transport. “In essence, standardisation links to all cross-sector activities, and it is also trust to the users, to use products and services in a safe, efficient and sustainable way,” summarised Joost Vantomme, ERTICO CEO.

The next edition of the 2023 FOCUS ON event will take place in the last quarter of this year on the topic of Micro-Mobility.

Read more about the ERTICO Partnership.

Access the photos of the event here.