Management of Transport Models

Management of Transport Models


J Kiel, NEA Transport Research and Training, NL


Management and maintenance are often neglected aspects of transport models. This is a risk for the reliability of the results. This paper elaborates on this subject and provides examples and suggestions for improvements


The development and application of transport models is a widespread and exciting work. Year by year hundreds of papers, articles and books are written on the subject of development and application of transport models. Over the past thirty years modelling transport has become more and more important for policy makers. Transport models underpin most policy plans. This is true at any scale (local, regional, national and international).

As the use of transport models increase, the problems of managing and maintaining the models increase as well. These problems are often overseen or even neglected. Yet, to make sound and solid transport policy plans, not only good models are needed, but also good management and maintenance of the models. Without good management and maintenance, the results may become unreliable.

The problems and questions that may occur are obvious. For example, different users produce with the same model and the same scenarios different results. Which results are right or wrong? Why are the results different? Who is checking the results and what needs to be checked? How do we organise a large group of applicants and users? What is the shelf life of a model?

In the Netherlands this aspect of transport models gained more and more attention over the past few years. Both at a regional and national level, schemes and plans have been developed, to manage and maintain the strategic and tactic transport models, such as the Dutch National Model System (NMS) and the New Regional Model (NRM). At European level, first initiatives have been taken to improve the management of a system like TransTools.

This paper will deal with the management and maintenance of transport models. It draws from experiences from the Netherlands, as well as from abroad. It will provide examples and suggestions. The paper will elaborate both on the management and maintenance of the input of transport models, the models themselves, as well as on the output of the systems. Aspects like communication, organisation and maintenance will be addressed.


Association for European Transport