• University of Leeds

Transport Systems: Global Issues and Future Innovations

Discover how the transport sector can develop infrastructures that meet the needs of a 21st century population.

7,827 enrolled on this course

Transport Systems: Global Issues and Future Innovations

Explore how and why transport systems must change in the 21st century

What are the challenges faced by today’s transport sector? How can transport professionals develop systems that meet the needs of the 21st century?

Get answers to these questions and more with this course exploring the future of transport. You will learn about effective transport planning and modelling, considering how transport solutions can become sustainable, reduce pollution and improve the health and safety of people across the world.

You will also consider how technologies such as connected and autonomous vehicles and high-speed rail might address global issues.

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Skip to 0 minutes and 10 seconds Problem solvers from a range of academic disciplines and professions are needed to shape the future of the transport sector, and find practical, sustainable solutions to the transport challenges faced in the 21st century. The Institute for Transport Studies at the University of Leeds boasts cutting-edge driving simulation technology, research areas of global interest, a diverse range of academic skill sets, and some of the most advanced modelling software available today. We’ve crafted this online course to explain how the changing nature of society affects transport, and explore how we can develop and evaluate solutions to address global challenges in transport infrastructure and operations. Do you have a mind for complex problem solving? Join Transport Systems, Global Issues and Future Innovations today.


  • Week 1

    Transport in the 21st century

    • Welcome

      Before you get started, take some time to meet the educators who will support you throughout the course. You'll have the opportunity to meet your fellow learners and plan your learning journey.

    • Challenges and opportunities

      In this activity, you explore the current role of transport and some of the challenges it faces. You also consider the work being undertaken to provide safe, affordable and sustainable transport in the face of rising demand.

    • Improving the enabling infrastructure

      In this activity, you consider the factors involved in designing road infrastructures. You also explore how traffic flows are modelled and how engineers forecast future demand.

    • The role of transport professionals

      In this activity, you explore the varying roles of transport professionals in responding to future challenges in the transport sector.

    • Summary

      To close this week of the course, you have the opportunity to check your understanding, reflect on the week and explore the Glossary.

  • Week 2

    Shaping the future of transport

    • About Week 2

      This week, you explore the health and environmental impacts of transport. You will look at infrastructure funding and innovative ways in which transport professionals are addressing the changing needs of transport users.

    • Paying for transport: What are the costs?

      You will start this week by exploring the monetary, environmental and human costs of transportation. You also look at how transport research informs decision-making processes in the transport industry.

    • How can emerging technology overcome transport challenges?

      In this activity, you explore the technologies being used to respond to the challenges facing the transport sector, which you looked at in Week 1. You are also introduced to initiatives within the road and rail transport sectors.

    • What does the future look like?

      In this activity, you are introduced to ways in which technology is being harnessed to address future transport needs. You’ll also explore a case study that asks you to consider how to solve a transport problem facing a UK city.

    • Summary

      This activity reflects on the two weeks of the course. There is also an opportunity for you to find out more about the range of Masters programmes available within the Institute for Transport Studies at the University of Leeds.

Who is this accredited by?

The CPD Certification Service
The CPD Certification Service:

This course has been accredited by the CPD Certification Service, which means it can be used to provide evidence of your continuing professional development.

When would you like to start?

Start straight away and learn at your own pace. If the course hasn’t started yet you’ll see the future date listed below.

  • Available now

Learning on this course

You can take this self-guided course and learn at your own pace. On every step of the course you can meet other learners, share your ideas and join in with active discussions in the comments.

What will you achieve?

By the end of the course, you‘ll be able to...

  • Describe current challenges facing the transport sector and possible solutions.
  • Summarise approaches to solving infrastructure problems.
  • Explore design choices that inform the redevelopment of an existing major road junction.
  • Explain the role that transport professionals have to play in shaping the future of transport.
  • Debate the rising financial, environmental and health costs associated with transportation and who should pay for them.
  • Explain how engineering technology is being used to address the challenges of rising demand for transport.
  • Investigate ways to address road safety problems in low and middle income countries.
  • Model alternatives to solve a complex urban transport problem.

Who is the course for?

This course is for undergraduate students and mid-career professionals interested in a career in the transport industry.

It will be especially useful for undergraduates studying engineering, urban planning, mathematics, economics, geography and psychology. It will also be useful for mid-career professionals already working in the transport sector or considering a move to the transport sector from other areas such as engineering, scientific research, local and national government policy making, construction and logistics.

Who will you learn with?

Lecturer in Transport Engineering,
Institute for Transport Studies,
University of Leeds

Who developed the course?

University of Leeds

As one of the UK’s largest research-based universities, the University of Leeds is a member of the prestigious Russell Group and a centre of excellence for teaching.

Endorsers and supporters

recognised by

MEDEA Awards

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Available until 22 November 2021 at 23:59 (UTC). T&Cs apply.

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