Introduction

IRIS Europe II (January 2009 – December 2011) continued the expansion and enhancement of RIS in Europe as successor of the project IRIS Europe contributing to establish safe, secure and efficient transport on the European waterway network, bringing advantages to governmental users as well as users in the logistics sector.

The project, co-funded by the European Union within the TEN-T Programme, was commissioned and co-financed by the Ministries of Transport of nine EU Member States. Four additional cooperation partners expanded the scope of IRIS Europe II to the European main rivers.

Objectives and challenges

The emphasis of IRIS Europe II was to facilitate the development of River Information Services in Europe, enabling an international coordinated implementation, provision and enhancement of services as defined in the European RIS Directive 2005/44/EC (which provides a framework for harmonised and interoperable RIS Systems and Services across Europe).

The main challenges throughout the project were:

·         Technical challenges: Deployment of onboard equipment and shore-based infrastructure as well as validation of technical feasibility, interoperability and compatibility of systems, services and applications.

·         Legal challenges: Conclusion of administrative agreements for international exchange of RIS data taking into account European and national privacy and data protection legislation and responsibilities among authorities.

·         Organisational challenges: Coordinated improvement of work flows from the production of basic data up to the provision of services towards the end users.

·         Quality of service: Definition, harmonisation and pilot implementation of a minimum European level of Quality of Information Services for RIS.

Cooperation with related projects

IRIS Europe II co-operated with other relevant activities such as the FP7 projects PLATINA (Platform for the implementation of NAIADES) and RISING (RIS Services for Improving the Integration on Inland Waterway Transport into Intermodal Chains), other parallel TEN-T Actions in the field of RIS and the SEE project NEWADA (Network of Danube Waterway Administrations) as well as with the RIS expert groups.

Project organisation

Within the IRIS Europe II project several coordination instruments were used in order to guarantee a stable and sustainable information process among the different levels in the international environment.

Project partners

·         Austria

o        Ministry of Transport, Innovation and Technology (BMVIT)

o        via donau – Österreichische Wasserstraßen-Gesellschaft mbH

·         Belgium

o        Flemisch Government

o        Waterwegen en Zeekanaal NV

o        NV De Scheepvaart

·         Bulgaria

o        Ministry of Transport

o        Bulgarian Maritime Administration

o        Bulgarian Ports & Infrastructure Company

·         Czech Republic

o        Ministry of Transport, Navigation Department

o        Directorate of Waterways

·         France

o        Ministry for Instrastrucutre, Transport, Spatial Planning, Tourism and the Sea

o        Voies Navigables de France

·         Hungary

o        Ministry of Transport, Telecommunication and Energy

o        National Association of Radio Distress-Signalling and Infocommunications (RSOE)

·         The Netherlands

o        Directoraat Generaal Rijkswaterstaat

·         Romania

o        Ministry of Transport

o        River Administration of the Lower Danube

·         Slovakia

o        Ministry of Transport, Posts and Telecommunications

o        Transport Research Institute (VUD)

o        KIOS s.r.o.

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