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20 Sep 2018

The Abertis Chair confers its fifteenth Prize for Transport Infrastructure Management and Road Safety

The Abertis Chair confers its fifteenth Prize for Transport Infrastructure Management and Road Safety

The winners are vying for the seventh International Prize, which will be presented in Paris in October

  • In the doctoral thesis category, the prize was awarded to Dr. Elena Mora Villazán, of the University of Cantabria, for a work titled "A Bayesian network approach for probabilistic safety analysis of traffic networks".
  • In the road safety category, the winner is Dr. César de Santos Berbel, of the Technical University of Madrid (UPM), for his work entitled "A methodology for sight distance analysis on highways, alignment coordination, and their relation to traffic safety".
  • A prize was also conferred for the best dissertation, bachelor's degree thesis or master's degree thesis to Xavier Ros Roca, for his work “Analyzing SPSA approaches to solve the non-linear non-differentiable problems arising in the assisted calibration of traffic simulation models”. In addition four second prizes were given.
  • In attendance at the award ceremony were José Javier Izquierdo, Secretary General of Infrastructure of the Ministry of Public Works, and José Aljaro, General Managing Director of Abertis.

The Abertis Chair, in conjunction with the Technical University of Madrid (UPM) and the Technical University of Barcelona (UPC), last night awarded the fifteenth Abertis International Prize for Transport Infrastructure Management and Road Safety in Spain. This accolade is awarded to the best doctoral thesis in this field at various Spanish universities.

Dr. Elena Mora Villazán, of the University of Cantabria, was the winner in the doctoral theses category for her work titled "A Bayesian network approach for probabilistic safety analysis of traffic networks".

In the road safety category, the winner was Dr. César de Santos Berbel, of the Technical University of Madrid, for his doctoral thesis titled "A methodology for sight distance analysis on highways, alignment coordination, and their relation to traffic safety".

In the dissertations and/or bachelor's thesis or master's thesis category the prize went to Xavier Ros Roca for his work titled "Analyzing SPSA approaches to solve the non-linear non-differentiable problems arising in the assisted calibration of traffic simulation models".

Elena Mora (center), accepting the prize from the present authorities

Four second prizes were also awarded: to Irene Martínez Josemaría, of the Technical University of Catalonia (UPC), for her research titled “Optimal location of variable speed limit application areas in freeways”; Dr. Albert Gragera Lladó, of the University of Barcelona (UB), for his doctoral thesis titled "The Economics of Parking: Essays on regulation, competition and information frictions”; Dr. Paola Carolina Bueno Cadena, of the UPM, for her thesis titled "Assessing social and distributional impacts of transportation policies for optimizing sustainability”; and Nerea Rambla Cerdà, of the Higher Technical School of Civil Engineering, Channels and Ports of Valencia, for her masters work titled "Analysis of conflicts between cyclists and vehicles at roundabouts on conventional roads. A proposal for roundabout improvements and redesign on the CV-500 between K.P. 21+000 and 22+000".

The prices’ global amount in Spain ascends this year to 14,000 euros.

Candidates for the seventh International Abertis Prize

The award ceremony, held yesterday at the School of Civil Engineering, Channels and Ports of Madrid, was attended by José Manuel Vassallo, Director of the Abertis-UPM Chair; the Secretary General of Infrastructure of the Ministry of Public Works, José Javier Izquierdo Roncero; the Director of the School, Francisco J. Martín Carrasco; the vice-rector of the UPM, Jose Miguel Atienza Riera, and the General Managing Director of Abertis, José Aljaro.

At the ceremony, José Aljaro explained that the Abertis Chair is "an interesting and innovative platform for collaboration between academia and the company and for education and the generation of knowledge that can be put to the service of society as a whole."

The General Managing Director of Abertis reminded his audience that these awards are one of the preludes to the seventh International Prize of the Abertis Chair. This award ceremony for this international accolade, for which the prize-winners of the various Abertis chairs (Spain, France, Chile, Brazil and Puerto Rico) will be vying, is to be staged at the Spanish Embassy in Paris on 18 October. 

Network of Abertis Academic Chairs

Aware of the importance of working with academia to achieve social and economic progress, Abertis fosters training, research and the transfer of knowledge between University and Company. The International Network of Abertis Chairs is the first university think tank with the mission of promoting road safety in higher education, bringing together the efforts of academic partners, the public sector and the private sector. It is one of the pillars of Abertis' steadfast commitment to road safety via its strategic Road Safety programme. 

This year the International Network of Abertis Academic Chairs received the Excellentia Ex Cathedra Observatory of the University of Valencia's award for its various initiatives within the framework of institutional chairs in the “Good practices in the management and governance of the resources of Chairs for the performance of their activities" category.

The network of Abertis Academic Chairs in Spain comprises those established in Madrid (UPM-Technical University of Madrid), headed by José Manuel Vassallo, and Barcelona (UPC), under Francesc Robusté. The company also has four international academic chairs: in France (IFSTTAR, École des Ponts), headed by Simon Cohen; Puerto Rico (University of Puerto Rico), under Benjamín Colucci; Chile (Pontifical Catholic University of Chile), chaired by Juan de Dios Ortúzar; and Brazil (University of São Paulo), under the tutelage of Leidi Bernucci.

The winning works can be viewed on the website of the International Network of Abertis Academic Chairs at: www.catedrasabertis.com

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