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Issue 34 | February 2016

Welcome to Issue 34 of insidetrack

Welcome to the first edition of InsideTrack for 2016! 

I would like to take this opportunity to welcome Patrick Carpenter to FISITA, in the role of Communications Officer. We are delighted to bring Patrick into the team, his many years of experience are already adding value and I am sure will continue to do so as we move forward and build on the communications activities that we already have in place. I am sure you will join me in welcoming Patrick to the team, and of course he will be pleased to hear from you anytime at regarding news stories or activities that we can report on your behalf.

In this month’s InsideTrack, we hear from FISITA President, Paul Mascarenas OBE, with an excellent Q&A interview covering many different subjects as we commence the year with plans that take our organisation forward. The Business Plan for 2016 was released within the members area in January, detailing the continuation plans and new initiatives, some of which Paul refers to within his interview. 

We also mark that the registration for EuroBrake 2016 will be opening soon, with links to the dedicated website, along with details about how students and young engineers can take part in this year’s EuroBrake Student Innovation Competition, once again brought to you in association with our friends at Daimler.

There are updates from within the FISITA community featuring Honorary Committee member AVL’s latest conference, while a look into the automotive flavour of the World Economic Forum in Davos last month rounds up the newsletter.

I look forward to another year of progress and collaboration with all of our members around the world.

All the best
Chief Executive, FISITA
In this issue of insidetrack...
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Interview: FISITA President Paul Mascarenas OBE
FISITA President Paul Mascarenas OBE provides a fascinating insight into his vision for the organisation and reveals FISITA’s involvement in the auto industry at such a crucial time.

Did your role at FISITA have any impact on your decision to leave Ford?
My decision to leave Ford and my current role at FISITA are pretty much unrelated as I was elected to the FISITA Executive Board in 2012 and have served as President since June 2014 - while still in my role as Chief Technical Officer at Ford.  After 32 wonderful years with Ford, and with so many friends and colleagues in the automotive industry around the world, it made perfect sense to me to continue in the FISITA role for the remainder of my term, with particular focus on inspiring students and young engineers and encouraging them to pursue a career in automotive engineering.

Raising FISITA’s profile was one of the goals you have set yourself, how do you plan to do this? Will you tailor your approach to accommodate regional variations?
We will raise FISITA’s profile by continuing to promote high quality events like the established World Automotive Congress and Leadership Summit, but also adding new events like EuroBrake, a specialised conference for the brake engineering community.  We will add new events as we see the opportunity to better serve our members, together with promoting other initiatives to enhance knowledge sharing and help progress the development of automotive technology - primarily in the areas of safety, sustainability and mobility.  These are three major trends that impact us globally and we see little need to differentiate FISITA on a regional basis.

What is your future vision for FISITA and do you have any specific milestones you plan to reach?
We have what we call our ‘Vision to 2020’. It’s a roadmap for the next five years. It is a plan that continues to embrace the legacy and history of our organization, but also implements changes required to take us forward. Think of it as being our past, present and future. Firstly building on the STEM programs that we have, but making them stronger. Secondly continuing to promote careers in automotive engineering, but recognising that new skill sets will be required. Thirdly continuing to serve our existing members - whether the automotive engineering societies in 37 different countries, representing over 200,000 individuals engineers, or our corporate members who support us through the honorary committee but better engaging with a third key stakeholder group, academia.

It is obviously an exciting time to be involved in the industry – but what do you see as its biggest challenges and how can members make a difference?
It’s for sure an exciting time to be in the industry, but I also believe we are at an inflection point. Those companies and organizations who recognise that and embrace the opportunity for change and modernisation, will thrive and survive. I believe those that don't will be left behind and will struggle to maintain relevancy.

I believe one of the biggest challenges remains attracting the best and brightest minds into the industry - particularly given the alternatives they have. Technology helps us - both in terms of the image and reputation of the industry and the type of work and skills that are required, after all what can be more challenging than making a vehicle that drives itself! So, I make the same request that I’ve made before, let’s all be ambassadors for careers in automotive engineering. You can make a difference through mentoring; volunteering to support events like Formula SAE, FIRST Robotics or the Solar Car challenge; speaking to groups of students of all ages, kindergarten through 12th grade or at college…the opportunities are endless. At the end of the day we’re dependent on having great engineers who can innovate for the future and we all need to play our part in developing that next generation of engineers.

Can you explain how you are working together with governments to promote automotive engineering within their education strategies? Will there be measures to ensure there will be sufficient engineers of both sexes and at all levels to meet future needs? 
Most of the work we do is through our Member Societies (representing 37 different countries) and our Honorary Committee members.  This is the most effective way for FISITA to exercise its global reach.  We recently commissioned a research study, through Frost & Sullivan, to better understand the supply and demand of automotive engineers on a global basis.  The results of this study are very interesting in respect of numbers, geographical distribution and critical skills.  The findings have just been made available to our members for review and a recommendation paper will follow.

What measures are you taking to engage the industry at a global level to achieve this and how will you approach emerging and newly industrialised markets? 
Amongst our Member Societies, we have some very large established organizations, like the Institution of Mechanical Engineers, VDI and SAE, plus many other much smaller societies in the new and emerging markets – collectively these societies represent around 200,000 individual engineers around the world. It is through this network that we can reach out and engage with the industry on a global level.

Do you see part of your role, on a broader remit, to engage with those outside the automotive industry?
FISITA is not a lobbying organization and we do not represent the industry in the way that, for example, ACEA does.  However, we do take every opportunity to promote positive messages about the industry. It is making great progress in areas such as improving fuel economy, emissions and safety advancements, which are often well publicised and obviously important issues. But it is also pertinent for us to also promote the less well known areas the industry is working on such as tackling issues like severe congestion, a lack of parking and poor local air quality brought about by large scale urbanization and increased population density.

Do you think that there are any positive outcomes that can be achieved as a result of the recent emissions scandal?
Each time there is a major recall or other reputational matter, the industry faces the associated negative press and public concern.  However, the important thing is that we, as an industry, learn from these issues and ensure that actions are put in place to prevent recurrence.  The data testifies to the improvements that have been made within the industry, particularly in the areas of fuel economy, emissions, safety, quality and comfort, all at the same time with more and more features being made available in an affordable and accessible way to literally millions of customers around the world every year.  It’s a remarkable story of progress and one that will for sure carry us into the future.

Two further big challenges on the automotive horizon are safety and autonomous driving, how can FISITA help achieve these goals globally? Particularly in emerging markets, where cars and other vehicles are cheaper and therefore the cost implications of sophisticated sensor systems is more critical than in established markets? 
Certainly safety and autonomous vehicles are areas of continued focus, along with connected vehicles and an intelligent infrastructure.  Combining technologies, such as V2X and on-board sensing, cameras, radar, lidar etc., creates a very powerful platform, which offers significant benefits in both safety and efficiency. Affordability will come through harmonization of regulations, standardization of hardware and scale leverage from other industries, for example consumer electronics and aerospace. 

FISITA’s role in bringing such technologies to market includes three key areas:
  • Facilitating knowledge sharing between key stakeholder groups both inside and outside the traditional automotive industry
  • Expanding our membership base to embrace the new engineering skills that will be required to deliver these technologies and
  • Continuing to work to ensure the education pipeline delivers a sufficient flow of suitably skilled engineers. 
These topics are recurring themes in both our bi-annual World Automotive Congress and annual Leadership Summit, held in London last year.
FISITA Business Plan 2016 

We are delighted to introduce the FISITA Business Plan for 2016.

In-line with the usual FISITA process, we have worked with our Committee Chairs in order to develop this plan, which we feel is appropriate, progressive and continues to drive FISITA forward in an achievable yet challenging manner.

We have brought the appropriate elements of the Vision to 2020 road map into this plan, as agreed by the Executive Board as the development agenda for our organisation for the next five years. This ensures that we sustain business and operational continuity through delivering and reporting against the usual business plan and annual sequence of events, whilst layering the development activities of the Vision to 2020 within the relevant areas of the plan.

We look forward to working with member colleagues in delivering this plan throughout 2016.
Click here to read the FISITA Business Plan 2016
Registration opens soon for EuroBrake 2016

Organised by FISITA, the world's largest braking technology conference and exhibition will be open very soon for registration. EuroBrake 2016 heralds the fifth anniversary of this prestigious and influential conference, which has grown annually in exhibitor and delegate attendee numbers, with over 900 delegates attending EuroBrake 2015 in Dresden, Germany. 2016’s event will take place in Milan, Italy, a thriving hub of design and industry.

EuroBrake runs from 
Monday 13 to Wednesday 15 June. For more information please see the EuroBrake website here, sign up to the official LinkedIn group here or tweet using #EuroBrake16.
Click here for more information on EuroBrake 2016
Enter the EuroBrake Student Innovation Competition

The EuroBrake Student Innovation Competition is now open for entries. Kindly sponsored by Daimler, the contest asks the engineers of the future to submit a technical abstract to outline their ideas and vision of the implications for vehicle braking systems of autonomous driving.

Winners will be invited to EuroBrake to experience an international conference first hand and exhibit their work in the form of a technical poster. From these posters, five finalists will be selected to present their work to EuroBrake delegates, with the overall winner of this final receiving EUR 500 in prize money. Click here for more information or contact FISITA Education Officer Hayley Millar at
28th AVL International Conference "Engine & Environment"

FISITA Honorary Committee member AVL has announced details of its 28th international conference in Austria, Powertrains for the Chinese Market, A Challenge for the global Automotive Industry. Registration is open for the event, which takes place between 9th - 10th June 2016.

Discussions will include customers' buying behavior, fuel economy and emission legislation, plus state interventions - targeting all aspects of the powertrain for China’s automotive future.

The welcome reception will be held at the AVL test track in Gratkorn, giving attendees the opportunity to drive around the track and experience how some of the latest automotive technology performs.
Click here to register for "Engine & Environment"
Automotive technology highlighted at World Economic Forum

The theme for the annual World Economic Forum this year was “the Fourth Industrial Revolution”, referring to industry-changing technologies and the book by the conference founder. The automotive industry was at the heart of these discussions, with Mary Barra, Chairman and CEO of FISITA Honorary Committee member GM, setting the agenda that “the auto industry will change more in the next five to 10 years than it has in the last 50”.

On the World Economic Forum website she writes that the change in the industry “gives us the opportunity to make cars more capable, more sustainable and more exciting than ever before”. She notes that electrification of vehicles has been enabled by a breakthrough in battery technology, which is now leading to many benefits, including vehicle safety. New technologies are allowing greater connectivity of vehicles that is assisting with greater protection on roads.

“In time, GM and others will introduce partially autonomous and, eventually, fully autonomous vehicles – cars that can drive themselves...The auto industry will play an important part in the fourth industrial revolution. At GM, we look forward to working with others to lead and define the future of personal mobility.”
Click here to read Mary Barra's article
The FISITA Automotive Diary is your online resource for all kinds of automotive engineering events happening across the globe. From conferences, forums, seminars and workshops, be sure to check back regularly to see what is new. Click here to visit the FISITA Automotive Diary.

SAE 2016 Hybrid and Electric Vehicle Technologies Symposium
9 - 11 February 2016, Anaheim, United States

The 3rd Iran Automotive Industry International Conference
29 February - 1 March 2016, Tehran, Iran

SAE 2016 On-Board Diagnostics Symposium - Europe
29 February - 2 March 2016, Stuttgart, Germany
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