A brief note on WCTRS ‘Young’ initiatives
The World Conference on Transport Research Society has established several activities dedicated to and run by young members, commonly called the “Young” initiatives, or “Y” initiatives. Two of the initiatives are explained here: social media (Y-III) and conference organization for young researchers (Y-I).
The WCTRS-YIII activity includes the development of networking facilities for young members of the WCTRS. This includes creating and maintaining a presence on social media, contributing to the WCTRS webpage, establishing mailing groups and a newsletter. The major agenda of the activities includes the promotion of the 2022 Virtual Conference, the 2023 WCTRS-16 in Montreal and in particular the Young Researchers’ Conference (17 July 2023). The team in charge of WCTRS-III is made of Ann Mary Varghese and Eeshan Bhaduri, under the supervision of Professor Laetitia Dablanc.
Ann is a Transport Economist researching (PhD) in the technology adoption of electric vehicles at the Indian Institute of Technology, Kharagpur. Having pursued her graduation, post-graduation and MPhil in Economics, Ann has also two years of work experience assisting consultants to be a consultant herself at McKinsey & Co. and Dohwa Engineering Co Ltd respectively. Her areas of interest include the sustainable transport infrastructure and econometric choice modelling.
Eeshan is a Doctoral Student (PhD) at the Ranbir and Chitra Gupta School of Infrastructure Design and Management at the Indian Institute of Technology, Kharagpur. He is an architect (B.Arch 2011-16) and obtained his Master’s degree in Infrastructure Design and Management from IIT Kharagpur in 2018. His areas of interest are transport infrastructure, travel behaviour modelling (econometric choice modelling), and Geospatial Analytics.
The WCTRS-YI activity is a one-day conference entirely run and organized by three young researchers, providing them with experience in conference organisation and management. The Young conference will take place the day before the general conference, WCTR-23 Montreal. The team will also attend the main conference and have the opportunity to network with their peers and established researchers and practitioners. The Young conference will be run on Monday 17th July 2023, with the theme ‘Imagining the Future: Sustainable and Resilient Transport’. There will be a Question-and-Answer session with senior Society members on career development. There will the opportunity to run other sessions on career development to suit the needs of young members. The Young Researcher’s Conference is free, but participants must also attend the main WCTR-16. The Young conference will be chaired by Sagar Patni along with two conference organising volunteers: Antoine Robichet and Rajendra Baraiya.
Sagar is a PhD candidate at University of Florida and will serve as the Chair of the WCTRS-Y I activity. He is actively involved with research related to transits, micro-transits, micro-mobility, smart city projects, community-based studies, COVID-19 and its impact on transportation systems and emerging modes of mobility. His research is not just about the emerging technologies but also involving communities and all the stakeholders to meet research goals and develop solutions.
Antoine is currently a PhD student in the SPLOTT laboratory – University Gustave Eiffel (France) and his project is divided into two parts. First, he is interested in the optimal location of sorting platforms around large metropolises. Secondly, he is studying the possibility of using modal shift in cities (cargo bikes, train) and determining their constraints. The major aim of his PhD would therefore be to help reducing the impact of greenhouse gas emissions of freight transport.
Rajendra is a research scholar in the Operations Management and Quantitative Techniques department at the Indian Institute of Management (IIM) Indore, India. He will serve as the conference organizing volunteer in the WCTRS-Y I young researcher conference. He is actively involved in the research related to logistics, transportation, inventory management, omnichannel, supply chain management, and blockchain in supply chain.
The WCTRS virtual event in 2022 shall include a Special session for young members facilitated by the WCTRS-Y Committee. The tentative program agenda includes young transport academics' career development, with Question and Answers between young and senior academics with wide-ranging issues from finding a position to publishing in good journals or discussing the impact of the COVID pandemic on networking. It might also include a session on professional dilemmas faced by young research scholars.
To attract more young members for the conferences and to build the contact base, the team wishes to include diverse activities. A dedicated newsletter exclusively for the young members with information on career development, updates of the WCTRS-Y activities, editorial letters from SIG chairs and other global transport researchers, interviews of WCTRS-Y grant recipients, important alerts, and words on the WCTRS journals Transport Policy and Case Studies on Transport Policy. In addition, there shall be a dedicated LinkedIn profile for WCTRS-Y that shall spread words with regular updates.
Eeshan Bhaduri, Research Scholar, Indian Institute of Technology, Kharagpur, India
Ann Mary Varghese, Research Scholar, Indian Institute of Technology, Kharagpur, India
Face Potential of telecommuting for different employees in the Indian context beyond COVID-19 lockdown – Research article
Telecommuting in India was relatively uncommon before the COVID-19 lockdown probably due to infrastructure constraints, larger family size, different lifestyles, lack of quality of the working environment at home, and inclination towards face-to-face interaction. The COVID-19 pandemic, the nationwide lockdown and the subsequent new normal scenario, has made the adoption of telecommuting by different type of employees indispensable thus giving us the opportunity to conduct empirical research towards a comprehensive understanding of the transformation in telecommuters’ adoption behaviour, efficacy, activity-travel behaviour and identification of the factors influencing the telecommuters’ behaviour and efficacy.
The data used in this research has been collected by circulating Google forms in various social media platforms like Facebook, LinkedIn, during two periods i.e. during the national lockdown and during the new-normal situation. A four-phase analysis has been performed to provide guidance for decision-makers and planners towards adopting measures to encourage telecommuting effectively in India. In the first step, telecommuting behaviour, activity-travel pattern and productivity of employees is estimated based on revealed responses received from various socio-economic groups for the period before and during COVID-19 pandemic (1. during lockdown 2. during new normal). Next, factors influencing telecommuting adoption and productivity are determined which has been used in our stated preference survey conducted in the second phase. Finally, based on stated responses, a logistic regression model has been developed to test the association of existing telecommuting behaviour, activity-travel pattern, factors influencing productivity, socio-economic characteristics and occupation categories with future telecommuting adoption.
Our empirical analysis reveals two major findings, i.e., a large percentage of employees can achieve their desired productivity by working from home (Figure 1) and the ‘rebound’ effect as identified in literature seems to have little impact which proves the applicability of telecommuting as a long term sustainable policy measure in the Indian context. Telecommuters from the age group 40–50 (middle age group of the working population), male, ICT professionals, managers and science and engineering professionals are found to be the most promising telecommuters considering both future adoption behaviour and productivity standpoint. The results have also revealed that male workers, workers having children, higher income, senior workers (>40 years old) are more likely to use personal vehicles, thus, facilitating telecommuting for them would result in relatively higher levels of reduction in vehicular emission. The factors hindering telecommuting adoption behaviour and to attain desired productivity are identified and strategies have been recommended for different authorities (government organizations, employers, IT sectors) to address them like digitisation of files/documents for easy access, provision of satisfactory telecommunication connection, creation of a comfortable working environment by providing required software and hardware support, training sessions and taking care of the mental health of the employees.
This study provides a novel general framework to determine potential telecommuters from employers’ and sustainability perspectives based on employees’ socio-economic attributes, activity-travel pattern during telecommuting, profession, productivity and its influencing factors that can be applied in any geographic area (country/city/specific locality) as well at an institutional level (organization level) to find out suitable socio-economic groups for telecommuting which will help concerned authority to formulate relevant policies and guidelines.
Reference: S. Nayak and D. Pandit, “Potential of telecommuting for different employees in the Indian context beyond COVID-19 lockdown,” Transp. Policy, vol. 111, pp. 98–110, 2021.
Ms. Suchismita Nayak, Research Scholar, Indian Institute of Technology, Kharagpur, India
Dr. Debapratim Pandit, Indian Institute of Technology, Kharagpur, India
WCTRS CAR Council for India
Bhargab MAITRA | Professor | Doctor of Philosophy | Indian
Ashish Verma, IISc Bangalore
Bhargab Maitra, IIT Kharagpur
Pushpa CHOUDHARY | PhD | Indian Institute of Technology
Professor G Raghuram - Gujarat Maritime University
Pushpa Choudhary, IIT Roorkee
G Raghuram, NRTI
Activities by CAR Council
A total of 347 WCTRS members are from India. The CAR council From India works towards keeping the Indian WCTR members engaged in WCTRS activities and their continued participation in upcoming WCTR Conference. For this purpose, an exclusive WCTRS India Mailing List has been created. Choices of the Indian WCTRS members for a specific SIG were collected by circulating a questionnaire to them. After getting the above information, the lists were sent to the respective SIG chairs requesting for inducting these members into the respective SIG. Currently, out of 347 WCTRS Indian members, around 120 are already being added to SIG of their choices. The remaining members, who have not yet responded, will be reminded again for filling up their SIG choices. The members being added to SIG of their choice can benefit from all activities (Webinars, competitions, relevant special issues, etc.) of that SIG.
Dr. Pushpa Choudhary, Indian Institute of Technology, Roorkee, India.
Membership of the WCTRS
The WCTRS is the only international society in transportation with a truly global network, bringing together over 1000 members from 67 countries to advance and exchange ideas and research across the transport sector.
Members connect through the Society's triannual World Conference, which provides a rich forum to present and discuss the latest in transport research and practice, and through the activities of the Society's Task Forces and 33 Special Interest Groups, each of which represents a specific area of interest and inquiry. Members under 35 years old are additionally invited to participate in the Young Researcher's Initiative activities, which include a one-day event at the World Conference where young researchers can present their work and take advantage of networking opportunities and discussions on career development.
As well as being able to access this global network through Society events and our exclusive membership database to make contacts and further research collaborations, WCTRS members also benefit from the Society's partnerships with other prominent transport organisations, such as the International Transport Forum, the Eastern Asia Society for Transportation Studies, and the Partnership on Sustainable, Low Carbon Transport. WCTRS and its partners exchange news and details of events, jobs, and publication opportunities and make this information available to members. All WCTRS members can obtain free online membership to the Society's two journals, Transport Policy and Case Studies in Transport Research, and have the opportunity to propose titles for publication in the WCTRS and Elsevier Transportation Book Series.
From academics, practitioners, and students to interested individuals, everyone is invited to join the Society and take part in its activities. Our current membership rates are USD 50 as standard, USD 30 for Members from the UN Least Developed Countries Category, and USD 20 for Students. These memberships will run until the next World Conference in Montréal, Canada, which will now occur Monday 17th-Friday July 21 2023. Transport Organisations who wish to support the Society can apply for Supporting Organisational Membership to access a number of promotional opportunities and memberships for up to two individuals.
If you have any questions about membership, do not hesitate to contact the WCTRS Secretary.
Prof. Greg Marsden, University of Leeds, WCTRS Secretary-General