This special issue offers an overview on digitalisation in road infrastructure. Digitalisation has a vertical impact across the several layers of the road system. This will bring, in the medium to long term, profound challenges and disruptions to the existing status quo in terms of construction, management, and particularly, operation of road systems. From technical design standards up to Mobility as a Service and digital platforms that allow the appearance of new services and mobility solutions, a new paradigm is emerging, able to extract added value from road investments.
The road infrastructure was traditionally the central element in the planning and management process of road transport. The focus is changing, and the service and users are now at the very center of the management process. Policy makers, regulators, infrastructure managers and road operators can extract significant benefits from the digitalisation, but to reap those full benefits, it will be necessary to have a clear view on the path ahead.
This special issue of the Network Industries Quarterly (NIQ) presents a set of five papers, developed by Researchers of Instituto Superior Técnico – University of Lisbon (Portugal), that provide a holistic perspective over the challenges, impacts, and risks of digitalisation in the road sector.
Neves and Velez developed a paper on the expected impacts of autonomous vehicles on road infrastructures of old urban centers.
Baptista and Duarte look into the trends of vehicle electrification and its challenges for infrastructure.
Sousa and Meireles analyse digitalisation of road infrastructure from a risk management perspective, particularly the possibility of implementing of a holistic quantitative risk management approach, allowed by the growing digitalisation.
Trindade and Almeida offer an analysis of digitalisation on the value realisation from infrastructure assets in asset-intensive organisations
Finally, Moura looks into digital platforms, particularly Mobility as a Service approaches.