A functional and well-developed transport system is a prerequisite for a sustainable and prosperous society. The creation and maintenance of such a system demand knowledge of transport and geoinformation technologies, as well as an understanding of how the new technologies and policies are adopted, how they interact and how they affect our daily activities.
Transport and Geoinformation Technology at KTH
The master’s programme combines two closely related aspects of the built environment: transport systems and geoinformation technologies. The programme enables students to either specialise in one of these main subjects or develop their own interdisciplinary study plan, making use of each student’s unique background and interests. The recommended courses form a foundation for both subject areas, and students can choose a subject area by selecting the most appropriate sequence of the elective courses. Most courses combine interactive lectures with laboratory work. Many also include an in-depth term project. The courses make use of modern data collection instruments and quantitative modelling and processing software.
In the final term degree project, students apply their acquired knowledge and skills to solving scientific problems in the main subject areas of the programme. They conduct independent investigations characterised by critical analysis and synthesis; they learn how to analyse, formulate and define scientific problems, find and evaluate possible solutions and, finally, present the results in a thesis. In addition, students will gain practical training in scientific communication and presentation, both orally and in written form. The degree project may be carried out at KTH or in a company or organisation outside of the university. The topic can be developed by the student alone or together with supervisors.
Transport systems deals with the movement of people and goods across space, and the socio-technical systems that support that movement. Skilled transport engineers and planners must combine elements of engineering, planning, economics, and systems analysis, to provide guidance on how transport systems should be designed, built, operated, and evaluated. As a specialist in transport, you will learn how to analyse complex transport networks in which the goal is for people to carry out their daily activities in ways that support economic activity while minimizing environmental impacts.
To grapple with the complexity of modern transport systems, transport planners and engineers need a high level of technical competence, but at the same time need to engage with policy-makers, stakeholders and the public who use the transport system so as to ensure that our solutions truly meet societal needs. Finally, we work across disciplinary boundaries to fully appreciate the possible effects of the transport system on urban development, the economy, and on ecological systems.
In the study of transport, we emphasize a systems approach that helps us both to manage the complexity of transport networks and to provide information that helps society make the best decisions about how to invest resources in long-lasting transport infrastructure. Nearly all of our graduates find a career in a city or county administration, in a transport ministry, as a consultant at a private firm, or as a researcher.
Geoinformation technology, also known as geospatial technology or geomatics engineering, is a science dealing with the acquisition, storage, management, analysis and delivery of geographic and spatially referenced information. Knowledge of the built and natural environment in the form of maps and databases is necessary for almost all fields of human activities. Today, we take it for granted that we use GPS receivers built into mobile phones or installed in cars to find our way to the restaurant, cinema or to an address that we have “googled”. Professionals in disciplines such as urban planning, land administration, real estate registration and many others use maps, city models and spatial databases for decision support. Geoinformation technology is not only about the collection of geographical data and its visualization; it also provides tools for using and interpreting the data for a different kind of analysis, for example finding optimal routes, identifying patterns, making predictions etc.
Geoinformation technology is a perfect choice for those of you interested in applied mathematics and computer science. You will learn, both theoretically and practically, how to acquire geographic data using different sensors or data sources and how to perform processing and analysis so as to be able to produce the required solution and its visualisation. Today’s and tomorrow’s labour market is growing in this sector and is in need of experts like you. You can work as a provider, analyst or user of spatial data and geoinformation technologies in both private companies and governmental agencies.
Transport planning, traffic simulations, transport economics, railway traffic and signalling systems, logistics, geographical data collection: remote sensing, GNSS, laser scanning; storing, structuring, visualisation and analysis of geographical data
Examples of career opportunities for graduates include:
- Geoinformation analyst: gathering, analysing, and reporting on geospatial data at national mapping and cartographic agencies (such as Lantmäteriet in Sweden).
- Transport planner/modeller: helping the city or regional governments to plan, design and operate transport systems and to analyse the transport effects of new developments to achieve sustainability (for example consultant companies like WSP, ÅF or regional governments).
- Consultant at a private firm in areas ranging from surveying, mapping, and geoinformation processing to transport planning and traffic engineering (such as Digpro or Ramböll).
- Railways engineer; undertaking the strategic planning of rail systems including infrastructure, rolling stock, timetable management, and traveller information services (for example at SL, SJ or local and national railway companies).
- GIS expert in fields ranging from urban planning to land and resource management to environmental monitoring (municipalities, consultant companies).
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