Advancing Women in Transportation

Call for Abstracts - 2016 WTS Annual Conference


If you are involved in the cutting edge of new technologies, tools, policies and options, and are leading the ‘future of transportation,’ you have an opportunity to submit your insights and solutions for a breakout session presentation at the 2016 WTS Annual Conference in Austin, Texas, in May. 

The 2016 WTS Annual Conference, Tune in to the Future of Transportation, will consider and share personal and professional development challenges and opportunities, discovery and review of new technologies, and the changes in supply and demand that may revolutionize how we utilize, access, fund and develop our transportation network. 2015 has seen the first testing of autonomous vehicles and trucks within the U.S., the evolution of alternative travel options with changes to the transportation sharing economy, and continued discussion on how we can fund our next generation of transportation projects, improvements, and maintenance. These future and continuing challenges for enhancing mobility and choices will be discussed through the following conference tracks:

Technology: Tuning into the Future of Transportation Technologies

Technology can be leveraged in a myriad of ways to benefit agencies and the public they serve, as well as their stakeholders and other interested parties. It can be used to improve service, customer communications, revenue collection, data accessibility, and transparency. It can improve safety, enhance or provide new mobility options, promote sustainability, optimize the supply chain, facilitate decision making, and improve a multitude of other processes inside an organization.

There are also two sides to technology in transportation: the theoretical, which posits the improvements and changes that could be possible with technology, and the practical, which includes building the right skill set, support organization, and plans to implement, manage change, and realize technology's effectiveness.

This track seeks to bring together experts in current and future technologies that do and will make a difference in the transportation industry. Tell us about the best technology available to transportation professionals, and those looming on the horizon. Presentations could also discuss technology projects that have created improvements, efficiencies, or mobility choices for an agency, its customers and/or its stakeholders, lessons learned from other industries, and measurements of success.

Supply and Demand: How Do We Get from Today to Tomorrow

This track examines two trends in the transportation industry. First, changing socio-demographics are impacting travel demand. The U.S. population is getting older, more urban, and more diverse in terms of race/ethnicity. Demands are changing because younger and older generations are either choosing not to drive or are no longer able to drive. In addition, advances in information communication technology (ICT) are changing the way people travel with new mobile apps, disruptive vehicle technologies, and substitution of technology for travel. Millennial and younger generations have grown up with pervasive ICT.  Second, the changing demand-side has prompted changes in the supply of transportation options.  Car-sharing, bike-sharing, and app-driven taxi services (like Uber or Lyft) are diffusing across the U.S. Mobile apps are being increasingly used by public transit agencies to connect with riders. Transportation alternatives are becoming more numerous and more convenient regardless of mode.

We are seeking presentations that showcase specific examples of changes represented by these two trends and what they mean for the future of transportation.

Project Development and Delivery:  Bridging the Gap Between Funding and Financing

This track will assemble experts who are engaged in developing policy, funding and financing strategies, and project development and delivery mechanisms (i.e., public-private partnerships) to help in bridging the gap between funding and financing our existing and future transportation network.

Infrastructure funding and financing approaches are expected to undergo dramatic changes and transformative challenges, as new technologies and trends change the face of transportation delivery.   In addition, policy will need to align to changing demographic trends, the sharing economy, new sources of transportation options, including autonomous vehicles and fluctuations in freight demand and delivery. Integrating theoretical and practical components to create policy and strategies for project development will require new technologies and tools for planning, development, and delivery.

We are seeking presentations on transportation funding and financing at all levels of government and the private sector, with the objective of exploring various means of bridging the gaps between funding and financing our intermodal transportation network. The focus of the track will be on both maintaining the state of good repair and delivering new and improved transportation infrastructure.

Professional Development and Leadership

As part of the WTS commitment to advancing women in transportation and increasing the leadership capacity of our members, this track is focused on professional development and leadership in the transportation industry. The track will include sessions that are focused on career building at multiple stages of development, from early career through executive management. Topics explored in this track will include life lessons learned in moving towards executive leadership, training and coaching considerations, team building, managing up, salary negotiations, and leadership in decision-making. Within these topics, we will examine how different choices may affect leadership outcomes and how you can develop a personal brand that serves to support you throughout your career. 

Click HERE for the Abstract Submission Form.

Submissions due by October 27, 2015.



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