Information published on 14 February 2017 in the UIC electronic newsletter "UIC eNews" Nr 535.

Results from 3rd edition of the UIC Global Rail Research & Innovation Awards

  • Research
  • Reporting
  • UIC Innovation Awards

Rail transport faces huge present and future challenges for which innovation and step changes are necessary. As UIC’s overall mission is to promote an increased use of rail transport at world level and to help members make rail transport more attractive, effective, sustainable and economically viable, the General Assemblies have brought their strong support to the ambitious programme of UIC’s International Railway Research Board (IRRB), as well as its initiative to set up the UIC Rail Research & Innovation Awards. The 3rd edition of the Awards came to an end through the organisation of the award ceremony held in St Petersburg in Russia on 1 December 2016.

Through these Awards, the UIC aims to support and promote:

  • The development of theoretical, experimental and applied research in railway transport
  • The development process of international cooperation in this field
  • The promotion and attraction of leading experts from different countries, research institutes, universities, railway operators, infrastructure managers, railway suppliers, passenger transport organisations, governmental bodies in charge of transport and individual research to address the most important problems and challenges of modern railways
  • The global recognition of the role of single researchers and research groups in order to establish rail as the sustainable backbone of the transportation system which is cost-efficient, reliable, safe and secure and will therefore become the mode of choice for passengers and freight forwarders

As well as to:

  • Support and encourage gifted young researchers, stimulate their research work in the sphere of railway transport, prepare a new generation of researchers, lay the foundations for future innovative development of railway transport and attract young researchers in the sphere of railway transport as well as to support the creation of favourable conditions for scientific discoveries and innovative achievements involving young researchers
  • Honour those persons who have spent their lifetime trying to innovate and improve the railway system and its services – the Lifetime Achievement Award

Following the first article in the series of the 2016 Awards where we focused on the award winner in the category of “Cost Reduction”, Mr Tsutomu Watanabe from RTRI in Tokyo, we now present you with some information on the winner of the prestigious Lifetime Achievement Award, Prof. Boris Lapidus, who chairs the UIC IRRB – International Rail Research Board.

UIC Global Research & Innovation Awards – Lifetime Achievement Award 2016

Prof. Boris Lapidus – (, Senior Advisor to the President of JSC Russian Railways, Chairman of the Board of Railway Research Institute (JSC “VNIIZhT”), Chairman of the Joint Scientific Council of JSC Russian Railways and Chairman of the UIC International Railway Research Board (IRRB). Mr Lapidus is a professional railway man, chartered engineer, Dr. Sc. Economics and visiting professor of the Stockholm School of Economics, Graduate School of Management of St. Petersburg University (SPbSU), Moscow School of Management SKOLKOVO, Lomonosov Moscow State University as well as professor of Moscow State University of Railway Engineering, as well as a leading Russian scientist in the field of innovative development, economics, reforming and strategic management of railway transport.

In 1965 he started working as an assistant diesel locomotive driver. In the 1980s – early 90s as Сhief Economist at the Privolzhskaya regional railway he was one of the developers of market methods for management of railway undertakings, as well as the creation of the first financial institutions on rail transport: commercial banks, insurance companies and championed their introduction. He developed a system of economic principles of railway consolidation.

The following developments have been made with his guidance and participation:

  • UIC strategic document “A Global Vision for Railway Development up to 2050”
  • Implementation of the UIC Global Research and Innovation Awards
  • Strategy for the development of railway transport in the Russian Federation from 2008 – 2030
  • Innovative transport and logistics products for the Eurasian transport connection “Transsib in 7 days” and “Baikal Shuttle”
  • The system of corporate transportation services of the Russian railways
  • Methodology of evaluating the technical and economical level of development of railways

Mr Lapidus has initiated and led the preparation of the academic study of scientific problems and the concept of creating the vacuum-levitation transport system. He has previously received the following awards for his important contributions to the development of the railways:

The Order of Friendship (2006), four governmental medals (1970, 1997, 2001, 2003), acknowledgement letters from President of the Russian Federation (2015) and Chairman of the Government of the Russian Federation (2004), the title of the Honoured Economist of the Russian Federation (1999) and the badge “Honorary Railwayman” (1991), second class badge of Merit for the development of JSC “Russian Railways” (2013).

Born on 10 April 1947, Professor Boris Lapidus is still as active as ever in promoting and stimulating the innovation of the global railway system.

For further information please contact Dennis Schut, UIC Research Manager: