Learned Programme

Papers at the JCT Symposium are delivered by practicing engineers, innovators, academics and industry experts. We pack in around 20 to 25 papers over two days in a single theatre keeping the audience engaged and informed.   


If you are interested in submitting a Paper and presenting it for 2024 all we initially ask for is a working title and a one or two paragraph short synopsis. You can make a proposal by using our contact form.

If you are attending the Symposium and have requested electronic copies of the papers rather than a printed copy you can download the e Papers below.

You will require a password to view the PDF and this will be sent to you in advance of the event by JCT.

Papers Delivered in 2023

Engineers plan transport systems, people use them. But the ways in which engineering measures success – speed, journey time, efficiency – is often not the way that passengers experience a good trip.
Afterall, people are not cargo. We choose how and when to travel, influenced not only by speed and time but by habit, status, comfort, variety – and many other factors that engineering equations haven’t yet captured.
As we near the practical, physical limits of speed, capacity and punctuality, we believe the greatest hope for a brighter future lies in adapting transport to more human wants and needs.
Pete and Rory wrote ‘Transport For Humans’ to show how there is a new way forward by adding behavioural science to engineering and economics.
In their talk they will bring to life concepts, examples and new ideas for designing transport for humans.

Rory Sutherland, vice chairman of Ogilvy UK and co-founder of its Behavioural Science Practice. Author of Alchemy: The Surprising Power of Ideas that Don’t Make Sense, columnist for The Spectator’s Wiki Man column, and presenter of several series for BBC Radio 4
Pete Dyson, researcher at University of Bath, former Principal Behavioural Scientist at Department for Transport and Senior Consultant at Ogilvy UK.


Listen to the Highways News Podcast where Rory discusses his forthcoming Symposium participation:

Suku Phull discusses how real-time traffic and travel information delivered directly to drivers can revolutionise travel and offer potential for improving safety, managing congestion and its effect on the environment.

When undertaking an MBA in Senior Leaders Master’s Degree Apprenticeship Emily identified the biggest barrier faced by Staffordshire County Councils ITS team:

With limited budget, struggling to maintain the assets to the required level, and to keep the assets in a safe condition, is a monotonous continual cycle which can disable innovation of the assets. Emily found that local authority colleagues were highlighting similar issues. This became the topic of Emily’s dissertation which compared how authorities manage their ITS assets primarily by interviewing multiple contacts across the industry. Her research makes various recommendations to help assist the industry and shows more effective ways of working to enable innovation. Emily will present her findings.


The selection of appropriate intergreen times is an essential safety consideration for any traffic signal design. If the times chosen are too short, collisions or near-misses could result. At the other end of the scale, times that are too long impact on efficiency. Guidance states that the suitability of intergreen times can be determined through on-site observation. But how effective really is this? How can it be determined that every combination of road user type on the gaining and losing phases makes a safe transition? The available intergreen guidance does not consider the specific geometry of a road or it’s gradient and no account is taken for the different performance characteristics of the wide range of vehicle types in use on our roads. A new method of calculating Intergreen times is presented in this paper that addresses these shortcomings, creates safe and efficient intergreen times for all users and removes the burden on signalling scheme designers.

Birmingham recently extended its tram network from Grand Central Station to Hagley Road. This section of tramway was typically shared with traffic with a number of traffic signal junctions and signalised crossings along the route. terminating at a new terminus site on Hagley Road.

During the design process 4way Consulting had  a number of challenges to overcome to ensure that the site complied with the Tramway Principles guidance, passed the rigorous safety verification process, and operated to a satisfactory level for all stakeholders.

The paper will look at the challenges faced and how they were mitigated to ensure a successful handover of the tramway extension

TfGM will give an overview of the traffic control systems in Greater Manchester, how they are managed and how they are working to improve their operation. TfGM will then move onto their ambitions and how they want to see the systems develop in line with changing policies. They will look at things on a network level, i.e. not focus on individual junctions, and present a long term vision of where Greater Manchester wants to get to.

Pedestrian metrics are needed for traffic engineers to get insights into pedestrian behaviour.  Because pedestrian behaviour is very different from vehicle behaviour then, while we still need flow, speed, density and delay, we also have to understand how the counter-propagating flows, the less well-defined mixing of pedestrians arriving and leaving a flow from different directions and the variability in speeds within the flows all affect both the accuracy and usefulness of pedestrian metrics and their application to addressing real-world problems. These complexities of behaviour mean that simple detection has not been able to reliably measure, let alone give insights into, pedestrians, and it is only with the recent emergence of AI backed video systems that multiple actors can be tracked, and their characteristics determined. 10 years ago these types of tools were confined to research laboratories. Now they are commercially available products, and we need to consider how best to use them.

This paper will look at achievable pedestrian metrics and draw on academic research to talk about what we can now say about pedestrian movements under a range of densities, flows and speed conditions. It will offer metrics derived from the Cambridge trial site reported at JCT 2022 as the basis for assessing these pedestrian metrics and testing academic thinking on pedestrian behaviour. Their relevance to active travel schemes will be assessed.

Having reviewed the nature and relevance of these metrics the paper will talk about how these may inform the control of a signalised pedestrian crossing, extending work already reported by Starling and others at JCT in 2022. It will extend the idea that the advent of smarter detection leads to a partitioning of the signal decision-making process between detector and controller, with each processing the data it receives and the signal controller then bringing both parts together under its safety umbrella to determine when to next change the signals.

In this way we hope to inform the JCT audience about how they can start to align pedestrian monitoring and control with vehicle monitoring and control to help the transition toward better crossings and then a more fully integrated mobility management capability. 

The A48, Briton Ferry Bridge is an aged steel and concrete construction four lane dual carriageway with a speed limit of 50mph. A combined footway/cycleway runs adjacent to the vehicle lanes, separated by safety barrier. The bridge is highly elevated with considerable changes in elevation along its length. It is in a very exposed position close to the coast. The A48 acts as a diversion route should the adjacent M4 be closed.

There was a requirement to upgrade the signals and detection at either end of the bridge. With the challenges of mounting signals detection on bridge deck ruling out most conventional detection options, the SWTRA, Atkins and Centregreat team took an innovative approach to the technical solution. With risks understood and accepted Smart Video & Sensing installed smartmicro radars at each end of the bridge to provide MOVA detection with IN loops at 115m and X loops at 40m from the stopline.The detection operation has proved very successful and is a credit to the ‘can do’ attitude of the teams involved

Since first being developed by TfGM, the ‘CYCLOPS’ junction is now starting to be adopted by other authorities and evolved to meet the specific needs of new locations. Lancashire County Council, supported by Atkins, implemented their first CYCLOPS Junction in 2023 as part of the Preston Cycle Superhighway scheme. The scheme aims to improve cycling and walking facilities to Preston Railway Station, encouraging safe and sustainable multi-modal travel as well as improving active travel around Preston. The CYCLOPS Junction provided an innovative way of achieving these, but posed some considerations and challenges that the design team had to overcome to successfully deliver an efficient and inclusive junction. This paper explores these challenges and the lessons learnt during the design process.

When segregated cycle lanes were to be added to a street in Merseyside, the narrow highway meant an alternative design was needed as all the options shown in LTN 1/20 and Traffic Signs Manual Chapter 6 were either not feasible or not suitable. A run through how the eventual concept design for an alternative style of cycle gate was developed, its relative advantages and limitations, demonstrating how there is still flexibility to be had within the bounds of existing guidance and how solutions can be hidden within it.

This paper will provide a full overview of the MAP refresh which TfL are looking to publish this summer. It will outline all of the significant updates, additions and revisions across the board from HTA, Microsim, local modelling (Including LinSig) and pedestrian modelling.

Bus RARR is a holistic public transport route assessment concept that takes a multi-faceted approach to enhance a bus route proposition in terms of safety and performance. This will consider traffic systems enhancements, bus priority technology, road layout, bus stop position, modal behaviours as well as data analysis in order to optimise a specific bus service on the TfL network.

The Bee Initiative, part of Manchester’s 2040 transport strategy aims to achieve a rate of 50% of all journeys being on foot, on cycle or on public transport by 2040.  Among a variety of initiatives, TfGM have teamed up with TRL Software to roll out the first of its kind Active Travel component for its UTC (Urban Traffic Control) traffic management software, as part of the DfT signal maintenance and innovation fund. In a joint presentation, TfGM and TRL Software will share insights on the opportunities this technology will provide to support realising Manchester’s 50% target, and how open data is a critical key to unlocking this door.

Leeds, like many local councils in the UK, faces challenges in accessing high quality data for traffic control. The data we receive is outdated, incomplete, and inaccurate, leading to problems on our local roads and junctions. To tackle these challenges, Leeds City Council partnered with VivaCity. Using their Smart Signal Traffic Control product, which delivers rich multimodal data in real time, we aim to improve our traffic control algorithms. During this presentation, we will present on the progress we’ve made and lessons learned while implementing our project with VivaCity. Discover the impressive impact and results of a single sensor monitoring pedestrian waiting areas, vehicle counts on individual lanes, and cycle lane approaches. And after, listen in for a teaser of the next step of our project, where we will be integrating this data with our central control algorithm.

Tom Siddall is a Principal Engineer at 4way Consulting and a regular Symposium presenter. Working on a wide variety of Traffic Signal projects Tom is in a particularly good position to provide insight into problems and propose interesting solutions. This year he will present a compendium of traffic signal issues:

  • Goldilocks MOVA linking using MOVA version 8 – Can you get it ‘just right’?
  • Just what do you get for £500,000? An overview of the DfT/LCRIG funded signals refurbishment project in Slough.
  • How difficult can it be? When that site you thought was going to be straight-forward gets more and more complicated.

This paper will explore the growing issue around drivers being distracted by their mobile phone, resulting in increased numbers of serious collisions where distraction has been noted as a causal factor.

New technologies have been developed in Australia by Acusensus, where AI (Artificial Intelligence) based cameras are now being used operationally to identify drivers who are distracted by mobile devices, or are not wearing the appropriate seat belt restraint.

The results of these Australian state wide programs will be discussed, demonstrating the changes in driver behaviour that are now being observed.  This will be compared to the ongoing evaluation trials in the UK, outlining the size of the current problem and how this could be addressed operationally.

In 2021 National Highways completed the improvements to the A45 Chowns Mill roundabout following nearly 20 months of work. The scheme has delivered improved capacity, safety and walking/cycling routes. This paper will explore the origins of the scheme, what other options were considered, the design philosophy behind the final layout and how the signalisation was developed, tested and implemented.

The construction of a new university campus in Peterborough posed a major problem for transport planning: how to provide the highest standards of walking and cycling links to the campus, while accommodating the associated increase in vehicle traffic? And all on the edge of a major City Centre. The scheme took a ‘blank page’ approach to re-imagine the local road network, with walking and cycling at its core – but guided by detailed iterative traffic modelling in Linsig throughout.

The design incorporates direct LTN1/20 cycleways, parallel crossings and features such as ‘hold-the-left-turn’, while providing a whole new road network to efficiently deliver drivers to their destinations. This paper explores the process followed to achieve it and the lessons learned along the way.

SWARCO has worked with Derbyshire County Council to deliver an improved standard UTMC product core by adding new functionality, adapters and utilising externally APIs to make the most of commercially available data sources.

Working with Derbyshire City Council, SWARCO has implemented a solution to the council’s problems by using our MyCity UTMC software to disseminate information about events and network conditions to the public via automated or manual tweets via Twitter.

MyCity UTMC also represents Car Park Systems as standard Car Park Objects and regularly updates with real-time occupancy data.

Another way in which we enhanced the solution for Derbyshire was by implementing a Pre-emtive Traffic Management System (PTMS) to use real-time traffic data to pre-empt traffic problems by putting into place ‘intervention packages’ consisting of direct messaging to road users and the settings of VMS.

By using Viasala Web Service we can monitor weather conditions and using Drakewell C2 - data from Bluetooth Journey Time Sensors with automatic traffic counters Derbyshire can use all this data in strategies.

“This project is a great example of how SWARCO and Derbyshire City Council have enabled cooperation and coordination across the ITS network.

They have taken the common database and expanded it beyond what UTMC was originally designed to do. Bringing in new data sources and creating strategies using that data has had a positive impact on our network. This project is also a great example of coordination between different ITS companies, as we have a diverse range of equipment from multiple suppliers.” – David Hilton Barber.

Within our MyCity UTMC solution for Derbyshire, Bus Open Data Service (BODS) provides real-time bus location data. This allows Derbyshire to visualise on the map view the current performance of the bus network and take action if necessary. Using the real-time data on the performance of buses in Strategy Designer acts as a trigger for corrective action or alerts.

Using the Eagle Eye network, Derbyshire can also view snapshots from CCTV cameras and view our live video stream.

For temporary traffic management and events, MyCity UTMC can also control Mobile VMS to set and view messages displayed on mobile signs in the same fashion as conventional fixed VMS.

This presentation outlines the results and learnings of recent FUSION trials conducted in Hampshire, UK. FUSION is a new network adaptive control technology, developed in collaboration with Transport for London and designed to offer the rich control of traffic signals together with a modern and intuitive user experience. The Hampshire trial follows earlier FUSION deployments and testing across London and used Journey Time as a Service (JTaaS) data to evaluate FUSION's performance across three new regions with differing characteristics.

This presentation investigates the way temporary signals and traffic management are deployed during site installation now and in the future. Historically temporary signals have been utilised during signalised traffic crossing and intersection installation works, which requires in most cases complex and costly traffic management including lane closures and civil engineering works. Yunex Traffic is proposing a new and more efficient approach to signal installation that can be used to address this scenario. Using a case study of a scheme where this approach has been deployed, Andy will explain the technical details of the solution, its design and installation processes, and will also share his insights into the efficiencies delivered and lessons learned.

A late entrant to the 2023 programme Peter presented on the end of 3G, Security and Opportunities to improve procurement of Mobile Communications.

2023 Session Chairs

The Symposium Learned Programme is split into seven sessions delivered contiguously over two days. Sessions are Chaired (moderated) by leading industry professionals and academics.

Professor Margaret C. Bell, CBE

Science City Professor of Transport and Environment 2006: Honoured Commander of the British Empire for services to Sustainable Transport, Queen’s 80th Birthday. 2019: Rees-Hills ITSUK Lifetime Achievement Award. Honorary Fellow of IHE and ICE, FIHT and CMILT and Honorary Editor Chief of the IET ITS. Founder, in 2000, and Chair of the ITSUK Smart Environment Forum until 2021. Currently the Independent Chairperson of the Bus Service Improvement Plan Enhanced Partnership Board in Derbyshire. Current research is establishing performance measures for Green Light Optimal Speed Advisory system integrated with SCOOT; evaluating roadside pollution (air and noise) in the vicinity of motorways operating Automatic Traffic Management and understanding travel behaviour of the Tyne and Wear Metro users. As co-investigator of the EU Interreg funded project eHUBS understanding the demographics of potential users of shared e-mobility (electric cars, e-bikes, e-scooters, e-Cargo bikes) in Europe including Manchester, Inverness, Dublin and Wallonia, estimating the impact of e-mobility on carbon and air pollution emissions.

Darren Capes FIHE FIET

ITS Policy Lead, Department for Transport Manager, Transport Technology Forum Vice President, Institute of Highway Engineers “Darren Capes has over 30 years’ experience working in local and central Government He is a Fellow of the IET and IHE, who has worked in most areas of municipal engineering with particular emphasis on design, construction and evaluation, transport planning, and technology development and implementation. Darren has a particular interest in emerging transport technologies and is Vice President of the Institute of Highway Engineers (IHE) and Chair of the Transport Policy Panel of the Institution of Engineering and technology (IET). He manages the Transport Technology Forum for the DfT and speaks regularly on the challenges of emerging transport technology in the UK and internationally”.

Mike Guerin

Head of Business Development for SWARCO UK & Ireland. In his role, Mike leads the Sales, Marketing and Bid function for SWARCO’s Traffic products. These include Urban Signs, Inter Urban Infrastructure (Signs & Signals) and software solutions (UTC, UTMC, MyCity). He has 4 years’ experience in the ITS sector, including 3 years at TRL Software, leading the Sales & Marketing function. Mike has extensive experience in leading Sales & Marketing teams in software and other industries, having worked for FTSE100, S&P500, SME’s and Scale Up companies. Mike has a degree & Masters from Lancaster University Management School, is a Fellow of the Institute of Professional Sales & is a big sports fan (speak to him about 90’s Premier League football, the pain of supporting Middlesbrough or his love of American Sports, particularly Chicago’s Teams). He lives in Ascot with his wife and 2 young children.

Paul Hutton

Transport Consultant and co-owner of Highways-News.com. "Paul Hutton is one of the world’s leading journalists specialising in transport technology. A trained broadcast journalist who worked as a presenter, newsreader and sports reporter on local and national radio and TV, Paul has been in the ITS sector for nearly 25 years having run the operations of two radio traffic news companies. Paul worked on the Travel Information Highway and delivered the Traffic Radio service for government as well as providing traffic reports for the vast majority of BBC and commercial radio stations across the UK and also working in Canada, Australia and the US. He co-owns the website Highways-News.com, provides PR and communications support for the Transport Technology Forum and a number of SMEs, and regularly hosts webinars and moderates panel debates at events."

Jennie Martin MBE FCILT, Trustee, PACTS

Jennie Martin has spent her working life in transport – with the then British Rail, the Corporation of London, and ITS United Kingdom. She was Secretary General at ITS (UK) from 2004 to 2023. She is a past Chair of the Network of National ITS Associations, hosted by ERTICO. She is a Vice President of CILT International, Chair of Bus Users UK, a Trustee of PACTS, Member of the ITS Committee at BSI, and a working group Chair with PIARC. Jennie is originally from Sweden but a happily naturalised Londoner for many years.

Dr Mark Pleydell

Director PLeydell Technology Consulting Ltd . PTC is a technology consultancy providing services to businesses and local authorities in the traffic control and ITS sectors. He is also, in an unpaid capacity, the director for TOPAS Ltd. He is a Chartered Physicist and joined the traffic industry in 1994. He has been representing the industry on standard and specifications setting bodies since the mid 90’s, representing ARTSM and working with the then Highways Agency and local authorities. He was long-time chair of what is now working group 4 and has sat on the Exec first in a co-opted role and subsequently as member of the Executive, becoming Vice Chair in March 23. Over the course of his career he has written numerous articles, presented at various events both in the UK and internationally. What gets him up in the morning is the sense of achievement that comes from solving problems for clients and helping to unite the sector and assist it in delivering well-defined pragmatic and innovative solutions to meet the ever-changing transport needs of our community. In his time away from the desk he has recently started bee-keeping and is looking forward to his first crop of honey.

Paula Claytonsmith

Director, Government, and Strategy at Local Council Roads Innovation Group (LCRIG) Paula is LCRIG’s Director, Government and Strategy and formerly Executive Board Director at Gaist, the multi-award-winning international highways and mobile mapping company working with the Government, local authorities, private sector, and international organisations. Paula has worked in local government leading frontline services, a national public sector improvement agency tasked with performance improvement, KPMG Government Advisory, international consulting assignments, political lobbying sector, and independent national government advisory roles. Paula has also worked in executive leadership roles in the charitable sector including a major stem cell cancer charity leading their operations department and a strategic policy and lobbying role in a leading environmental charity focused on behaviour change to improve local environmental quality. Latterly she has been involved with PIARC, World Roads Association technical committee on accessibility and mobility in rural areas. Paula’s passion for technology, data, and public services means that she has spoken on more than one occasion on BBC Radio4’s programme “In Business” about technology and Infrastructure. Paula has authored articles about infrastructure, data, and its social impact for the Institute of Highway Engineers. In 2019, Paula gave evidence directly to the Transport Select Committee on Local Roads Funding and Governance. Paula is also a member of the Royal Meteorology Society, with a strong personal interest in extreme weather, climate change, and other weather phenomena.

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