West Yorkshire Combined Authority’s (WYCA) Transport Committee has today agreed a research programme with the University of Leeds' Institute for Transport Studies.
Lasting three years, the work with the highly-regarded Institute will provide the Combined Authority with research into societal and technological developments that it can use to make better transport investment decisions around future demand for transport services. It can also ‘unlock’ other funds, such as support from the EU’s flagship Horizon 2020 project, which aim to secure Europe's global competitiveness.
WYCA and West Yorkshire’s district councils have a proven strong track record of working jointly with the Institute for Transport Studies on a range of projects including studies into carbon emissions and sustainable travel. Today’s agreement formalises this positive relationship and provides up to £100,000 funding over the programme’s initial three years.
WYCA Chair and Wakefield Council Leader, Cllr Peter Box said: “This agreement is in line with WYCA’s policy of working closely with West Yorkshire’s wide range of academic institutions and will help us develop a knowledge economy that helps us maximise the impact and value of our initiatives and policies.
“We will use this programme agreed with the University of Leeds today to explore further opportunities for collaboration with other academic institutions in our City Region.”
WYCA Transport Committee Chair, Councillor Keith Wakefield, said: “Developing a transport network for the Leeds City Region that supports strong economic growth, the creation of new jobs and widespread house building means us making decisions based on robust information.
“Working with the excellent Institute for Transport Studies through this programme will help us to develop a world class approach to planning for the future.”
Dr Karen Lucas, Director of Research at ITS said: “This is an important and exciting opportunity to translate the best evidence from our extensive scientific research into successful practical delivery on the ground.”
The programme will be jointly directed, managed and evaluated by WYCA and the Institute.
University of Leeds’s Institute for Transport Studies was the first academic unit in Britain to achieve ISO 9001 accreditation for research management and was awarded the Queen's Anniversary Prize for Higher and Further Education in 2009. WYCA staff have also provided input into taught and research courses at ITS.
WYCA will be making a contribution of around £100,000 over three years. The Institute for Transport Studies will commit £50k to the wider economic benefits aspects of the work by funding a postdoctoral researcher for a year as well as funding a one day a week secondment.
Transport Committee meeting agenda