Friday, September 19, 2008

Future of Railway Service - in German!

Yesterday I had an interesting experience: I was interviewed in German on the Swiss national radio station DRS. They asked me questions about the future of rail service - a topic close to my heart. I offered to do the interview in English, but the interviewer said my German was fine - I felt great!

I think they hoped that I would present really different ideas like magnetic levitation trains (maglev) or other 'visions' for the future. But I didn't. My opinion is that by applying "social innovation" to railway systems we can really improve our transport systems. We don't need significantly faster rail technology, we need to make existing rail travel easier, more comfortable and slightly faster (i.e. apply high speed rail technology). High speed rail should be the transport mode of choice for trips less than 600 km, flying for trips greater than 800 km, and, for trips in between, people should choose based on the specific circumstances.

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