The Institute of Transportation Studies at the University of California, Berkeley is taking another step forward to forge new relationships around the world after signing a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the Catalan Ministry of Territory and Sustainability May 18, 2015.
“We look forward to rich collaborative research and practical efforts with Catalonia,” says ITS Director Alexandre Bayen. “This is an exciting area for us to build on individual efforts to include a greater scope of opportunities.”
This builds on a UC Berkeley visit by Catalonian delegates in June 2014 that also sparked a MoU between the Catalan government and the government of the State of California,
signed on April 6, 2015.
“This is very important for the Catalan Government,” says Santi Vila i Vicente, Catalan Minister for Territory and Sustainability.
The MoU between UC Berkeley and Catalonia prepares a foundation that should help define the framework of a more solid future arrangement as discussions, needs and opportunities flesh out the partnership.
Catalonian delegates Vila i Vicente, Josep Enric Llebot, Secretary of the Environment and Sustainability, Andrew Davis, Generalitat Delegate in the US, and Anselm Bossacoma, Director of the Catalonia Business Promotion Center in California began the discussion of what the direction the future arrangement could take, specifically talking about collaborative transportation related research and entrepreneurship opportunities at UC Berkeley and in Silicon Valley, with Bayen, University of California Center on Economic Competitiveness in Transportation Assistant Director Juan Argote and Chancellor's Professor of the Graduate School Carlos F. Daganzo.
Other considerations on the table regarding the arrangement could include the possibility of commissioning transportation studies pertaining to Catalonia, the participation of Catalan companies and institutions as final users of the research developed at ITS Berkeley, strengthening of the relationships between ITS and the Center for Innovation in Transport (CENIT) at the Polytechnical University of Catalonia, Barcelona Tech, with researcher/faculty exchanges, and the possibility of collaborating in research projects between ITS and CENIT, including European projects within the 2020 Horizon program (https://ec.europa.eu/programmes/horizon2020/).
ITS Berkeley and the Catalonian delegation will continue to build the framework for a larger collaboration and further opportunities.