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Insights from the Young Researchers’ and Practitioners’ Forum at the ETC 2023: between traditional sessions and an interactive one to the Neil Mansfield Award winner.

One of the 11 committees that organise the European Transport Conference every year is the Young Researchers’ and Practitioners’ Forum (YRPF), a special platform for young professionals in the early stages of their careers to discuss trends and upcoming topics.

During this year's conference, the YRPF Committee presented a comprehensive three-day program, featuring traditional sessions on important subjects such as Data Analysis, Transport Modelling, Public Transport, Shared and Sustainable Mobility, as well as Transport Equity and Human Well-being.

The highlight of this year's event was the special session led by Maha Attia and Vincent Marchau. They presented on: "How certain are you? A serious game for exploring uncertainties in accessibility planning."

The recent events surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic have highlighted the presence of numerous uncertainties in accessibility planning, challenging traditional predictive approaches. However, planning under uncertainty becomes challenging when it comes to identifying and prioritizing uncertainties and assessing their impact on plans.

In this interactive session, the participants played a card game in multiple rounds, allowing the authors and attendees to explore possible uncertainties and test their influence on the plans of a specific city.

The authors introduced their approach (Triple access planning for uncertain futures) and discussed how serious gaming can contribute to this methodology. By collaborating and challenging their mental models, the audience gained a deeper understanding of accessibility planning under uncertainty.

The YRPF Committee also presents the Neil Mansfield Award, recognising the best paper written by an author in the early stages of their career. This year, the award went to Jamie Ward (pictured above, third from left), a Transport Planner at Ramboll London & Cambridge, for his paper titled: "A route-level analysis of factors affecting the relationships between bikesharing and public transport in central London: integration, complementation, and substitution."

This paper served as an excellent case study in a city with significant demand for public transport and a rapidly growing cycling culture in recent years.