In 2018, Finland decided to apply to host TRA2020. TRA being the foremost European transport technology event, we regarded the conference as an excellent opportunity to bring out the European know-how, research and innovation in the field of transport from the point of view of rethinking transport.
One of our goals was to highlight the Finnish RDI on the European level as well as to offer our excellent researchers and innovators an opportunity to present their work and network with European and international collaboration partners. We also aimed at participating in the European discussion on the future and focus of the research and innovation activities in the field of transport on a strategic level. Another goal was to bring together the Finnish players in the field to showcase the Finnish know-how.
Extensive collaboration resulted in a high-quality conference programme
TRA2020 Transport Research Arena was to be held on 27 – 30 April 2020 in Helsinki, Finland. The programme was built under the umbrella of the conference theme, “Rethinking transport”. The conference visitors would have been catered with over 100 sessions ranging from plenaries and strategic sessions to technical and scientific sessions. The spectrum of planned formats was extensive: panels, workshops, traditional sessions, interactive sessions – unconventional and innovative formats were also to be endorsed.
With a multidisciplinary selection of speakers and exhibitors, we were looking forward to one of the most intriguing TRA conferences of all time. A large group of stakeholders from Finland and Europe alike participated in the preparations, including top research institutes, authorities, companies, associations and non-commercial communities.
“A pandemic won’t keep us from rethinking transport”
As we all know, the COVID-19 virus began to spread around Europe in March 2020, eventually forcing us to cancel the event. The cancellation notice was given on 13 March 2020 after the Finnish Government had issued a policy statement stating that all major seminars and events organised by the state would be cancelled until the end of May. With the physical conference cancelled, TRA2020 was realised in the form of various webinars, among other virtual means. Read more on our article “TRA2020: Rethinking transport virtually”.
The conference preparations would not have been a success without the resources, time, and hard work of everyone involved in organising TRA2020. We want to express our heartfelt gratitude to our sponsors, collaboration partners, exhibitors, session organisers, all researchers who submitted a paper and everyone registered to attend the conference. We are looking forward to seeing you in TRA2022 in Portugal!
The TRA2020 team