Collaboration urged at CIHT Luncheon

Importance of adopting collaborative approaches to address challenges facing the highways and transportation sector was emphasised at CIHT’s 67th Annual Luncheon on Friday.

“I believe that with improved collaboration we can deliver truly world class transport infrastructure and services,” Institution President Steve Rowsell told an audience of 1800 members and guests at London’s Grosvenor House Hotel.

Steve Rowsell’s presidential theme for the year is ‘strategic collaboration in transport’. He urged those in the sector to place greater focus on embedding collaboration across industry working.

For example he said: “Clients need to recognise and release the potential of the supply chain to innovate and to deliver improved productivity.”

He also emphasised the importance of collaboration to improve workforce diversity and ensure highways and transportation careers are an attractive option to young people.

“Industry diversity is not something to be tackled just by individual companies,” he said. A collaborative approach is needed to make the industry attractive to a more diverse pool of talent.”

Guest Speaker Tricia Hayes – director general for roads at the Department for Transport – added that the long term success of the industry will be determined by its ability to ensure it is an attractive place to work.

She pointed out that the sector offers a wide range of desirable careers. However young people, and particularly girls, are opting out, she said. “It is clear we are making some progress on our diversity agenda but not as much as we should.”

The Annual Luncheon also saw speeches from CIHT Chief Executive Sue Percy and writer and broadcaster Gyles Brandreth. A full report on the event will feature in the January edition of Transportation Professional.