ERTICO interviews Phil Blythe Professor of Intelligent Transport Systems and Director of the Transport Operations Research Group” at new Partner Newcastle University

ERTICO: Can you describe your activities in the ITS field?

Phil Blythe: Newcastle University has been involved in ITS research since the first DRIVE programme in the late 1980’s.  The transport operations research group TORG has led in this area (road pricing and tolling” info-mobility systems smartcards and e-payment electric vehicles eco-driving and driving behaviour ITS for mobility impaired and traffic and environmental sensing and monitoring – and the evaluation of all of this) however other groups in the university also undertake ITS research including NewRail and Marine (e-Freight) and schools of electronic engineering and computer sciences (smartdust and wireless sensor systems and data management).

ERTICO: Why have you joined ERTICO?

Phil Blythe: We have been highly successful in European Projects but feel that a partnership with ERTICO members will enhance this help us develop new networks and partners and help us grow our core research interests.  The north east of England has a real appetite to support transport innovation and host demonstrations and trials and to this end we feel we can work with ERTICO to develop projects which utilise some of our current facilities such as our electric vehicle fleet and associated charging infrastructure (SWITCH-EV); environmental sensor networks (MESSAGE); telematics to assist elderly and disabled travellers (SIDE/OASIS) regional UTMC (sited at the University) and e-payment and e-freight areas.

ERTICO: What are your expectations for this partnership?

Phil Blythe: We like the professional approach of ERTICO and the useful information they can provide on EU strategies calls for projects and general intelligence on ITS.  We hope to be given opportunities to exploit our skills and those of our regional partners to develop ITS research and innovation and to have the opportunity to participate in associated proposals.

We also look forward to participating in the research platform and key task-forces.

ERTICO: Are there any projects activities or sectors that you are particularly interested in?

Phil Blythe: Electromobility CVHS e-payment info-mobility e-freight supporting mobility impaired travellers evaluation activities and a host of other ITS and transport-related activities.


Company profile:

To better coordinate the transport research activities across Newcastle University all the major research groups and Schools who participate in transport technology research have formed Transport-Newcastle which is a research network with a vast range of expertise in many areas of transport. The Transport-Newcastle network will enable the University to address transport issues regionally nationally and internationally in a more coordinated and cohesive way adding greater value knowledge and breadth to the research industrial collaborations consultancy and support of policy agendas.  Our transport research activity is organised under the following research themes:


Web links:

Information on Professor Blythe’s profile/activities is available at:

TORG Webpage is available at:

Latest news on Transport Research and Activities within the Group

Information on the Foresight Intelligent Infrastructure Study is available at:

New book by Pickford and Blythe on ‘Road User Charging and Electronic Tolling’ available at:


Link to original Article

Original Publication Date: Tue 19 Apr 2011