Sarajevo links with Southampton to plan better transport systems
Bosnian academics have swapped Sarajevo for Southampton as part of a European project to improve transport education in the war-torn city.
Many roads and railways in the Bosnian capital were destroyed or badly damaged in the conflict; transport planners are now facing major challenges in rebuilding the city for the 21st century.
Their visit has been arranged as part of the ADVENTURES project (Advanced transports for University Education in Sarajevo) which aims to:
- Produce eight new textbooks and associated teaching material on transport
- Re-stock the library in Sarajevo, destroyed during the war
- Re-equip the traffic laboratory with new hardware and software
- Offer training courses and exchange visits for staff so they can learn about the new teaching materials
In this trip, the six academics from Sarajevo visited the port of Southampton, the city's pioneering ROMANSE traffic management system and the National Motor Museum at Beaulieu. They also visited London on the historic first morning of congestion charging.
Assistant Professor in the Faculty of Traffic, Transport and Communications at Sarajevo, Osman Lindov, said: "We want to learn from your experiences in the UK. At the moment, Sarajevo has about half the number of cars on the road that you have and it is important to control the growth of traffic. We would like to develop a sustainable transport system for the future."
The three year project, funded by the European Commission under the TEMPUS programme on education and culture, is led by the Politecnico di Torino in Italy, which is also hosting a number of academics from Sarajevo.
Dr Nick Hounsell from the Transportation Research Group in the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering is managing the project in Southampton. He said: "This link-up has helped us to develop new course material to benefit everyone in the project. But we are also learning so much from European co-operation. It has been illuminating to discover the challenges in Sarajevo and we hope they can learn from our mistakes in transport planning, as well as a few successes!"
Notes for editors
The University of Southampton is a leading UK teaching and research institution with a global reputation for leading-edge research and scholarship. The University, which celebrated its Golden Jubilee in 2002, has 20,000 students and over 4,500 staff and plays an important role in the City of Southampton. Its annual turnover is in the region of £235 million.