News Release

Transportation Leaders Collaborate on Book that Debates Solutions to the Capacity Crisis Facing Global Transportation Systems

New book published by Cisco presents latest, global view of impact of technologies on the future of transportation
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Mar 21, 2006

LONDON, UK, March 21, 2006 - Leading business executives, government authorities and industry visionaries, from some of the world's top transportation organisations, have contributed to a book highlighting the important issues facing today's US$3 trillion transportation industry. Their essays in Connected Transportation, published today by Cisco Systems, suggest viable strategies to meet the challenges created by escalating demand for transportation services, and resulting congestion problems and strain on existing infrastructure.

Edited by the Pravin Raj, Syed Hoda and Howard Lock from the Cisco Internet Business Solutions Group (IBSG), Connected Transportation brings together 15 contributors from: Aéroports de Paris, Airport Authority Hong Kong, ARINC Inc., Bombardier, British Airways, DHL, the European Commission, JetBlue Airways, Lufthansa Technik, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey, PSA Singapore Terminals, Volpe National Transportation Systems Center and the US Department of Transportation.

The contributors agree that building more facilities, roads or airports is a less viable option in developed countries, and that if the growing demand for travel and shipment of goods is not addressed, it will have profound implications for the global economy.

Use of Present Capacity Must Be Improved

"Although a number of strategies aimed at meeting the growing demand for transportation services are being debated within the industry, the most viable strategy calls for increasing capacity by improving the utilisation of the existing infrastructure," explains Pravin Raj, Director, Global Transportation Lead at Cisco Systems Internet Business Solutions Group (IBSG) and one of the book's editors. "This approach offers the highest return on investment as now, more than ever, maturing technologies allow organisations and governments to deploy solutions that increase the velocity, or throughput, of transportation assets.

"Connected Transportation is an important addition to the international debate on the future of transportation. Ignoring these issues could have significant consequences for our future economic growth."

This view is reinforced by Dr Binny Prabhakar, consultant from Frost & Sullivan, who comments in her review of Connected Transportation: "If growth of transportation, the important driver for globalisation, becomes constrained, then we may as well concede to 'limits to globalisation'. This is a challenge not only to the transport providers but also the governments worldwide, making it imperative to ensure that the transportation and hence globalisation and economic growth does not hit a roadblock."

Connected Transportation provides a current perspective on the industry from those who are actively involved in developing its future and, as part of a discussion on the capacity utilisation discussion, the essays also explore topics such as the role of government in transportation, the use of pricing as a mechanism to control congestion, the need for business process innovation, improving security and the social, economic and political mix involved in providing an efficient transportation system. In addition, contributors outline how they have used new technologies to increase customer satisfaction, improve performance efficiencies and develop competitive advantage.

Technological and Business Innovations Needed

One contributor, François Lamoureux, Director General at the European Commission, Transportation and Energy Directorate, puts forward the Commission's strategy rationale: "European transport systems are afflicted by chronic congestion. In addition to the environmental costs, calculations indicate that the financial burden of congestion costs one per cent of our GDP - about the same as it costs to run the European Union. … Technological innovation provides an excellent opportunity for modal integration and performance optimisation, as well as for safety improvements and helping to make transport development environmentally sustainable."

In his essay, Sir Rod Eddington, formally CEO at British Airways, promotes technology as a competitive differentiator that has enabled the company "to continue product innovation at an unparalleled pace."

He explains it has transformed the way BA communicates with its customers and improved working practices, but highlights the importance of re-engineering business processes alongside the introduction of technologies. "Simplification and the use of technology have been fundamental to the process changes that have helped drive efficiency into BA…..You have to change your processes and be prepared to adopt smart systems, otherwise the efficiencies will elude you."

Connected Transportation is the seventh in a series of thought provoking books produced by the Cisco Internet Business Solutions Group and which give up-to-the minute analysis on private and public sectors by international visionaries. Books already published are Connected Heath, Connected Cities, Connected Schools, Connected Government, Connected Homes and Connected Workforce. Connected Transportation, and all the books in the series, are available from http://www.cisco.com/go/ibsg