Sunday, June 16, 2024

Note from Honorary Member and Ex-President

Arun Shirole, P.E., Ex-President, ATPIO

Dear Members and Friends of ATPIO,

A decade has passed since the Association of Transportation Professionals of Indian Origin (ATPIO) was formed as a non-profit organization. To date, ATPIO has maintained focus on its strategic objective to facilitate bilateral collaborative activities and partnerships that include research, as well as knowledge and technology transfer between diverse groups of transportation professionals in the US and India. Today, ATPIO’s membership includes distinguished academics, as well as highly respected transportation professionals from public and private sectors, who have hands-on experience in the US, India, and in many other countries and have helped develop policies, programs, and practices across transportation modes. I want to take this opportunity to review with you a decade of ATPIO activities.

Over the past decade, ATPIO has organized free webinars, Annual Meetings, cosponsored conferences, and workshops; as well as collaborated with academics, research organizations, and government agencies both in the US and India.

ATPIO Webinars

ATPIO’s free webinars have been on topics like Nanotechnology, Transportation Asset Management, Congestion Management, Management of Complex Projects, Performance Specifications, and Public-Private Partnerships. These webinar presentations were based on cutting-edge research findings like those of recent SHRP2 and NCHRP projects.

ATPIO Annual Meetings

ATPIO annual meetings have been a stage for policy-level discussions, showcase for emerging technologies, forum for brain-storming and garnering help for near future ventures, and promoting transportation-themed initiatives. The networking at ATPIO annual meetings has resulted in 26+ joint publications involving academics from the US and India. Bilateral research collaboration has proved to be mutually beneficial for researchers. For example, US researchers gained more exposure to extend the homogenous traffic theories to more complex heterogeneous traffic; whereas researchers on the Indian side gained easy access to databases to test their base hypotheses. In addition, such collaboration has provided researchers an opportunity to study and replicate successful strategies being implemented on the other side. These exchanges have also provided undergraduate and graduate students an opportunity to have a broader view of the field of transportation.

Collaborative Activities

1. In 2009, ATPIO assisted the Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials (AASHTO) in organizing the visit to India of a high-level AASHTO delegation. A memorandum of understanding (MOU) between AASHTO and Indian Roads Congress (IRC) was signed during this visit.

2. In 2011 ATPIO organized, in collaboration with TRB and International Road Federation (IRF), “First International Symposium on Advances in Transport Sustainability”, @ Arizona State University.

3. In 2015 ATPIO co-sponsored, a 9-day “Workshop on Smart Cities” held in Varanasi, India. Participants in this workshop were 91 graduate students and 20 university faculty members from the US and India; as well as representatives of the City of Varanasi, organizations and governmental agencies from US and India.

4. ATPIO has been actively facilitating collaboration between academia in the US and India. ATPIO members regularly participate in organizing conferences held in India. For example, ATPIO co-sponsors biennial international conferences on “Transportation Planning and Implementation Management in Developing Countries (TPMDC)” organized by the Indian Institute of Technology, Bombay (IIT-B). ATPIO will be assisting IIT-B host the 2019 World Conference on Transport Research (WCTR). Another example is ATPIO’s co-sponsorship of Transportation Research Group’s (TRG’s) biennial conferences in held India.

Earlier this year, ATPIO expanded its Professional Development Program. In addition to regularly scheduled webinars, it now includes professional mentoring of young professionals, as well as graduate students seeking careers in transportation. Three students are currently being mentored under this program. Please refer to ATPIO for detailed information and help ATPIO in publicizing this program.

Your active participation in ATPIO’s current and proposed future initiatives will be of great help in facilitating a proactive dialog between agencies and organizations in the US and India. Please join us and become active in bringing public and private sector counterparts from the US and India together to facilitate research, as well as knowledge and technology transfer for the betterment of transportation in the 21st Century.

To join ATPIO, click here.

Best wishes,

Arun M. Shirole’, P.E.

ATPIO Ex-President