1. Innovation
  2. Participation in international platforms and programs
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Ferrovial

Ferrovial - Integrated annual report 2013 / Participation in international platforms and programs

Ferrovial forms part of international business networks and plays a role as active member to boost research, development and innovation policies.

Among them are the following:

European Network of Construction Companies for Research and Development (ENCORD )

Ferrovial is vice-president and general secretary of ENCORD. It is a network of 19 companies in the construction sector with headquarters in nine European countries, represented by high-ranking executives in the areas of research, development and innovation.

Shift2rail

This is a Joint Technology Initiative that channels European innovation investment in the rail sector for the period 2014- 2020. Its function is to promote research and innovation to drive solutions in the market that speed up the integration of new rail technologies and products. Its goal is to promote competitiveness in the European rail industry and satisfy its changing transport needs, within the framework of the single European Railway Area (SERA).

Plataforma Tecnológica Española de la Construcción (PTEC )

This is a group of organizations belonging to all the agents in the sector at national level. It has more than 120 associated sector representatives (construction companies, suppliers and business associations). One of the aims of the platform is to boost the internationalization of R&D&i among its members. Ferrovial is co-leader of the Strategic Working Group on internationalization within PTEC, together with AIDICO and Acciona.

SESAR European Airports Consortium (SEAC )

SESAR is the operational and technological implementation of the program for the Single European Sky initiative. The aim of the program is to develop a new generation of systems for managing air traffic capable of guaranteeing the safety and efficiency of air traffic in the future. In 2009 the operators of the six most important European airports (among them Heathrow) joined forces in the SESAR European Airport Consortium (SEAC).

At the same time, in 2013 the company took part in programs supporting innovation on an international scale. The ongoing search for solutions and methods to improve production and the service offered to Ferrovial clients has led to the presentation of various proposals for projects for programs financed by the European Commission. They include: the Owel project, which investigates the logistics and execution of construction work on offshore air turbines. It was presented for the Seventh Framework Program (7PM) with the participation of Ferrovial Agroman UK and CI3; the Geaways project, which aims to develop an evaluation methodology based on life-cycle analysis, to analyze the sustainability of linear infrastructure constructions, presented for the LIFE+ call for proposals; and the AsphR3 project, on which Amey, Ditecpesa and CI3 are collaborating, to apply recycled asphalt for the construction of roads and highways, proposed for the Eco-lnnovation call for proposals.

In 2013 Ferrovial Agroman was integrated into the consortium set up to develop the PLAN4MED project, which aims to study the effect of the processes of constructing and laying underwater sewage outlets around the posidonia field habitats in the Mediterranean. A proposal for funding assistance was submitted to the European Commission’s LIFE+ 2013 project, which has so far not been awarded.

The recent publication of calls for proposals in the European innovation aid program Horizon 2020 provides new possibilities for developing projects that respond to the company’s needs and objectives. In the final months of 2013 there has been work on analyzing the subjects of this new framework program, based on the excellence and relevance of the innovation projects. The program includes the complete cycle from research to the market, with the focus on innovation activities, knowledge transfer, standardization and market acceptance. Ferrovial has held working meetings with the Ministry of Economy and Competitiveness, CDTI and the European Commission in Spain and in Brussels, to identify the challenges that fit best with the company’s innovation strategy. In particular, within the “Societal Challenges” priority (closer to marketing), Ferrovial is interested in the following challenges:

  • Challenge 2: Food security and the bioeconomy. In particular, the provision of ecological services (biodiversity, pollination, water regulation, reduction of erosion, the capture of carbon, greenhouse-gas mitigation) and sustainable forestry (biomass production, consideration of economic, ecological and social aspects, efficient resource systems, forest resilience and protection of biodiversity).
  • Challenge 3: Secure, clean and efficient energy. Of interest are energy efficiency, smart cities and communities, and low-carbon energy.
  • Challenge 4: Smart, green and integrated transport. Transport must be sustainable (resource-efficient transport that respects the environment), without interruptions (better mobility, less congestion, and more safety and security) and competitive (global leadership for the European transport industry).
  • Challenge 5: Climate action, resource efficiency and raw materials. In the area of waste: buildings and consumers, recycling of raw materials for products and buildings, promotion of eco-innovative waste management and prevention within the framework of sustainable urban development. In the area of water: closing the transfer gap between innovative water solutions and their commercial applications, adapting to climate change, protecting the environment, sustainably managing natural resources such as water, biodiversity and ecosystems, and ensuring the sustainable supply of nonenergy and non-agricultural raw materials.