The ITRD Database: an Important Tool for Transport Research
C J Howard, TRL Limited, UK
ITRD, a database of more than half a million abstracts of publications and ongoing transport research, is described. Subject coverage and how the database can give relevant and high quality results in contrast to just Internet searching is stressed.
International Transport Research Documentation has at its heart the ITRD database - a co-operative World-wide database of published information and ongoing research in the transport field.
For many years the OECD Road Transport Research Program and now its successor, the OECD/ECMT Joint Transport Research Centre, has overseen the ITRD in its mission to facilitate the dissemination of information in the transport field. Since 2003 TRL Ltd has administered ITRD on behalf of OECD.
Input to the ITRD database is provided by more than 30 renowned organisations from more than 23 countries in one of the four ITRD languages. More than 400 000 abstracts are available via the Internet or other complementary channels such as the Transport CD-ROM with more than 10 000 references added each year.
Each record contains an informative abstract, from the world's published literature (reports, books, journal articles, conference proceedings) or a summary of an ongoing research project.
The subject content is described and how the ITRD system works together with examples of searches which demonstrate the quality and relevance of information retrieved compared to more general web searches.
The importance of literature searches of databases such as ITRD is stressed, before embarking on research, thus avoiding possible overlap and reinventing the wheel. ITRD is also a mechanism for sharing and disseminating the results of research once completed.
Details are given of how the database can be accessed online via the STN or OvidSP platforms as well as the benefits of membership which includes free network access for up to 5 concurrent users in an organisation.
Association for European Transport