Study Abroad: Portland Meets Netherlands – Multimodal Transportation Engineering Applications and Innovations in the Netherlands

February 1, 2012 at 6:30 pm

Dates: June 29 – July 16, 2012

Image courtesy: via Google Images

This program presents an introduction to transportation engineering applications in the European context. The course will build on earlier courses with a special emphasis on differences between U.S. and Dutch standards. The curriculum will feature material that provides a contrast between engineering principles and policies focusing on the standards presented in both the Manual of Uniform Traffic Control Devices and the Highway Capacity Manual. Furthermore, specific emphases on engineering principles and practice will be explored through field trips and in guest lectures both while abroad and in Portland. Students completing this course will have a greater understanding of the contrast in policies from the Portland area with communities in the Netherlands.

The location of the course was strategically identified to share the experience with an established program from Northeastern University led by Dr. Furth. The concept for this program is to join the Northeastern students for the first two weeks, returning back to Portland after that period to complete the course in Portland. During the two weeks at TU Delft, there will be a field trip every day within the City and to surrounding communities (including Amsterdam, Rotterdam, Den Haag, and others). Delft is centrally located and provides an ability to represent transportation designs that follow the national policies. The lectures are a combination of guest speakers from local practitioners and others that Dr. Furth has enlisted in the program in the past.

Program Focus

Course Information

  • CE 410/510: Transportation Engineering Applications – 4 credits – (6 credits are also available as an option with additional coursework after returning to Portland)

Draft Itinerary

  • This program will include at least one pre-departure course meeting and a number of on campus course meetings after the group returns to Portland.
  • International Component: June 29 – July 16, 2012
  • For students opting for 6 credits, additional coursework (by arrangement with the instructor) and a substantial written report are required after returning from the Netherlands.

Students will spend two weeks at the Technical University of Delft developing an understanding of the transportation systems of the cities in the Netherlands, including Delft, Rotterdam, Haarlem, Den Haag, and others. A typical day will include a guest lecture from a practitioner in the local community followed by a field trip. Lunch will be time to explore the local community and students will be asked to document their experiences by collecting information (digital pictures and notes) throughout the day. The context of each community will offer opportunities for the lecturers (Furth and Koonce) to offer perspectives from their communities (Boston and Portland), contrasting the planning, engineering, and policy issues associated with the local communities. This combination will allow students to gain an understanding of transportation concepts that have been implemented to address specific challenges.

Click here to learn more and to apply.