RSSB R&D Research Competitions

RSSB has launched a series of research competitions over the years, which have helped to promote academic research in order to develop new ideas and find novel solutions to ‘old’ rail problems. 

We have done this by involving professionals and researchers from other sectors; facilitating and promoting cross-sector knowledge transfer; and, presenting the challenges in an interactive way.

Some of the Research, Development & Innovation competitions have been targeted specifically at academia with the aim of funding novel academic feasibility projects, which fall in the "fundamental research" domain and are at early-stage Technology Readiness Levels (TRLs). In general, our RD&I competitions are open to a wide audience of innovators, academics and members of the supply chain community.

How to get involved

This is a service RSSB offers to the whole industry. There are different ways you can get involved: 

  • By suggesting a topic for a future competition, which RSSB can fund if the challenge is of a cross-industry nature
  • By co-funding a competition with RSSB, if the topic is of interest to a broad range of industry partners but you are keen to take a lead
  • By funding a competition and having RSSB run it for you, taking all the hassle out of organizing a launch event and managing the submission of proposals
  • By bidding for funding as an indidividual company or in a consortium of multiple members (you do not need to be an RSSB member to apply for funding)

What do our partners and sponsors say?

It’s been really great to see industry taking an innovative view when trying to solve some of our long standing problems. As part of  a recent call for research RSSB has opened our doors and allowed some of the brightest minds in academia to review our perennial issues. This has sparked fresh ideas and generated novel solutions which will allow us to continue delivering a safe, modern and punctual service to our customers in the years to come.

Richard Byrne, Chair of the People on Trains and Stations Risk Group (PTSRG) - about the PTI competition

The organisation was brilliant and the venue and agenda engaged conversations to happen across the piece – one of the best industry events I have been to.

Richard Raine, Network Rail - about the 'Data Sandbox' competition launch event

Well done for organising and supporting attendees to make the most from this opportunity. It was good to see that so many academics are and want to be involved in railway

Gosia Hodgkinson, Great Western Railway - about the 'Data Sandbox' competition launch event