EURNEX, the EUropean rail Research Network of EXcellence, has turned from an EU research project within the Sixth Framework Programme into a self standing legal entity in 2007. It comprises 47 scientific institutes in the area of transport and mobility all over Europe, represented by a standing committee. The Advisory Board which directs research consists of high level decision makers from the rail sector. EURNEX is the first research cluster of excellence to underpin the European Research Area in the rail sector. With EURNEX, the integration of the excellent European rail researchers has been achieved.
Driven by operators and industries and supported by the European Commission EURNEX provides multidisciplinary R&D organised in scientific poles of excellence, pursuing
- integration and knowledge sharing throughout the EU-27;
- provision of local based services in the EU member states representing the summarized knowledge of the European rail research community;
- fostering innovative, practical solutions to increase competitiveness of rail transport stakeholders and overall system.
There are 10 poles of R&D:
- strategy and economics;
- operation and system performance;
- rolling stock;
- product qualification methods;
- intelligent mobility;
- safety and security;
- environment and energy efficiency;
- human factors;
- training and education.
With the poles the involved EURNEX scientists profit by:
- internationalisation through establishing new partnerships with colleagues from other countries, thus complementing their own capabilities to improve the "individual scientific competitiveness";
- improving the knowledge about the specific challenges and future issues of the rail system in other countries in order to enhance the understanding of the European dimension for the future rail system;
- learning more and discussing the future issues and the project approaches to cope with these challenges through the direct dialogue with industry and operator representatives in the poles;
- initiating and developing R&D projects on European scale within the poles and with cross-pole multidisciplinary cooperation (already done with FP7 1st call, for instance).
EURNEX has designed, under the Sixth European Framework Programme project, a Knowledge Management System (KMS). This aims to become the main knowledge exchange platform dedicated to rail research projects in Europe. The objectives of the EURNEX KMS are to collect knowledge and ensure that knowledge is provided to customers, also as an incentive system for further research contracts. The KMS provides a directory of research institutions and researchers, project information and documentation, search tools, internal messaging system, and newsletters.
Database search and access capabilities
At the moment the KMS is under development and access is restricted to EURNEX members.