Research on future urban transport

In early 2011, Anders Brännström assumed the position as Chairman of Volvo Research and Educational Foundations (VREF). One of his priorities is to disseminate the research results to a broader audience that have been generated by the foundations. A new research program was recently launched: coping with freight in future urban transport systems.

Urban transport is becoming one of the major headaches of political leaders on city, regional and even national levels. Very little research has been made up until now on the impacts of urban freight on the urban environment. Therefore we see this topic as a prioritized area to investigate further.

Some three billion people live in cities and within a couple of decades another two billion people are expected to move to cities. The urbanization goes hand in hand with industrialization and higher standard of living, which increases the value of time and thus the search for more efficient transport systems.

VREF finances research and educational projects at universities all around the world. Universities all over the world can apply for funding for a five-year research program about freight in urban transport.

Approximately 25–30 MSEK is distributed to research programs annually.

FUT program contributes to sustainable city areas

VREF initiated the research program Future Urban Transport (FUT) some ten years ago. The program intends to develop strategies to support the development of sustainable transportation systems in large urban areas around the world.

Eight Centres of Excellence have been established through funding from VREF. The Centres are located in Australia, Chile, China, India, South Africa, UK and in the US. The Centres collaborate with local opinion leaders and decision makers in the regions.

In total some 200 man-year of research have been conducted so far."

Anders Brännström, Chairman of Volvo Research and Educational Foundations (VREF)