The Shift²Rail initiative that has been developed within the EU’s Horizon 2020 Framework Programme for Research and Innovation is about to go live. The regulation establishing the Joint Undertaking was published in the Official Journal on 17 June and will pass onto the statute books on 7 July.
That of course is just the beginning of this unprecedented opportunity for the rail sector and one that the companies in the rail operating company should be fully embracing. This programme will start in the early part of 2015 and is scheduled to last for seven years. It will be the single focal point for EU-funded rail-specific research and innovation over that entire period and so it is important that the rail operating community gets as engaged as possible.
Two European IMs are engaged directly in Shift²Rail as founder members, along with a number of manufacturing companies and a further number of rail companies are planning direct involvement as Associate members. There is also the EUROC consortium of RUs and IMs that is developing its plans so that it can present its application to become an Associate member in Shift²Rail. This consortium is open to any RU or IM that is located within an EU Member State or in a country that has a “third country” arrangement with the EU.
Any company that is considering this level of engagement has until mid July to have formally confirmed their intentions. Further information can be obtained by contacting Simon Fletcher, UIC Coordinator Europe who would be delighted to provide you with further information.
The regulation is available here: