ITS Global Business & Systems Engineering Committee Launched

its2011_1The IRF Washington launched its new ITS Global Business and Systems Engineering Committee at the request of many IRF members involved in ITS. The Committee was approved by the IRF Washington Board of Directors at a recent meeting and will be led by Dr. William (Bill) Sowell, MBA, PhD, Executive Vice President, Aldis Corporation (Chair), and Dr. Robert Jaffe, President of Consystec (Vice Chair). All IRF members in good standing with an interest in ITS are invited to join.

There is a growing global consensus regarding the significant benefits of intelligent transport systems (ITS) deployments and their utilization to address major transportation congestion, safety, security and environmental challenges.

However, a thorough understanding of ITS as a system of systems, and of the foundation open standards upon which they can be planned, deployed, operated and maintained, remain challenging in many countries around the world. This challenge continues to inhibit the successful deployment and sustainability of cost-effective, technically-sound, and locally-appropriate integrated ITS solutions by government agencies, that can be an effective and critical element in the deployment of better, safer and more sustainable surface transportation systems globally. Sharing knowledge of the best ITS solutions, standards, practices and processes can be an effective tool to address this challenge. A second hurdle slowing the effective deployment of ITS globally is the lack of adequate initial or sustained funding levels (whether due to low overall ground transportation funding or to specific deficiencies in the ITS area).
A final hurdle is the lack of complete market transparency, and corresponding lack of open competitive procurement in many countries. This committee seeks to promote the development of a true global market in ITS equipment and services, through support for use of open standards, access to information, and increased government procurement transparency, so that currently national or regional companies can become, respectively, regional and ultimately global companies. Increased competition will be the key to a more efficient market worldwide. Committee Objectives

  • Promote and serve as a clearinghouse of worldwide best practices, processes, solutions and case studies in partnership with other associations. Whenever possible, promote best-practices that are appropriate for the needs of recipient countries and regions.
  • Promote technology-neutral long range systems engineering to develop ITS solutions and capital planning for ITS investments by government entities (i.e. ITS architecture).
  • Promote the use of open ITS standards profiled to be appropriate to local and regional needs.
  • Develop working groups to focus on specific challenges (described above and as they may arise in the future) and make recommendations to the committee.
  • Identify specific ITS-related educational needs that can be addressed by the IRF in seminars or workshops, including procurement and tendering best-practices
  • Interface with the Geneva Program Center’s existing ITS Policy Committee with a view to cooperation and avoidance of redundancy and duplication of effort.
  • Identify and make available suitable industry publication venues where members can publish articles and op-ed pieces.


The committee will be led by a Chair and Co-Chair, drawn from the IRF WPC Board of Directors, with terms of two years. All IRF members worldwide are eligible for induction into the committee.
The committee as whole will deal with issues and objectives of interest to all sectors (public, private and academic). In addition, a number of subcommittees will be created to deal with issues of more particular interest, as appropriate. The initial subcommittees will be:

      a. International Business Subcommittee – Chaired by William (Bill) Russell, President and CEO of Eberle Design, will focus primarily on the business needs of the private sector members, on international trade and procurement issues.
      b. Training and Education Subcommittee – focusing primarily on the technical needs of public sector members, including systems engineering and standards.

Membership in each subcommittee is open to IRF members of regardless of sector. The committee and its subcommittees will meet in person or by phone on an approximately quarterly basis. Specific dates and times will be set by the Chair-person with input from the members and IRF staff. For in person meetings, anchor ITS-related events (such as the ITS World Congress, IRF regional congresses or IRF board meetings) will be used.

To Join the Committee and for Further Information

Both the committee and its subcommittees are open to all IRF members in good standing with an interest and involvement in ITS. For further information or to join the IRF ITS Committee, please contact Gabriel Sanchez at, or+1 703 535 1001 (office), and +1 202 486 7934 (mobile).

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