WCRR2001 is Held in Cologne, Germany

Manager, International Affairs,
Information and International Affairs Div.


    The 5th World Congress on Railway Research, WCRR2001, was held in Cologne, Germany, from November 25 to 29, 2001, and provided an opportunity for railway research experts from all over the world to meet and discuss the latest advance in railway technology. Deutche Bahn served as a main host of this congress and successfully completed it under the motto, "Market - Products - Technology."
    At this congress, 408 papers were presented in total and RTRI's papers on Cyber Rail won the Best Paper Award. Furthermore, Mr. Masatake Matsuda, Chairman of the JR East joined the discussion at the Round Table in the Opening Session, and Mr. Takamine Watanabe, Deputy President of the JR Central made a presentation on high-speed rail, and Japan's advanced railway system was introduced to the railway-related people from around the world and attracted a great deal of attention.

More than 1,000 participants

    Despite the hanging concern about terrorism, the attendance finally amounted to as many as 1,050 people from 32 countries around the world.@Among them, Japanese participants were almost one hundred, mainly from the JR companies.
    The entire session period consisted of 164 oral presentations in 40 sessions, 113 special poster presentations in 21 sessions, and 131 poster presentations in 35 research fields. RTRI made a total of 41 presentations and four of RTRI's researchers served as a session chairman.
    A technical exhibition was also opened during the congress period and joined by 48 companies and organizations and 10 universities. RTRI exhibited one booth on behalf of the JR group companies and three more Japanese companies including Sumitomo Corporation participated in the exhibition. RTRI also sponsored one of the five best paper awards and Mitsubishi Heavy Industries offered mouse pads as the mementos for participants.

Overview of the Congress Program

    Prior to the opening of the congress, a welcome party was held on the night of November 25, where Mr. Heinisch, Chairman of the Organizing Committee of WCRR and President of DB Netz, and Mayor of the City of Cologne extended welcome speeches.
    In the Opening Session, speeches were made by Mr. Heinisch, Mr. Mehdorn, Chairman of DB AG, German Federal Minister for Education and Research, and Mr. Busquin, European commissioner for research.
    At the Round Table chaired by Mr. Murray Hughes of Railway Gazette, Mr. Matsuda of the JR East joined the discussion with the chairmen of UIC, UITP, UNIFE, and other top management from industries.
    Five Best Paper Awards were given to outstanding papers at the gala dinner on November 27, and Mr. Ogino of RTRI was given one of them on behalf of the authors of the three papers on Cyber Rail.
    Members of the WCRR Organizing Committee gave an overview of all the presentations at the Closing Session chaired by Mr. Muttram, the new chairman of WCRR Organizing Committee and Chief Executive of Railway Safety, followed by the closing remarks of Dr. Rausch, Board Member of DB AG, and Mr. Gallois, President of SNCF. Finally, Mr. Muttram concluded the congress with the announcement of WCRR2003 in Edinburgh, United Kingdom.
    After the presentation sessions were over, ten courses of technical visits were provided at Transrapid Test Line in Emsland, construction site of a new high-speed line between Cologne and Frankfurt and other places.