Transportation Science

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Traffic sciences is a collective term for all scientific disciplines that deal with the research of the natural sciences, technical, technological, economic, sociological, legal, geographical, historical, educational and psychological laws of traffic in connection with the relocation of goods, people and messages.


Transport science can be understood as a framework science of sub-areas of other sciences. These sub-areas consist of relatively independent, but closely intertwined disciplines and fields of work, e.g. B .:


The prerequisite for the development of traffic sciences was the development of traffic and the corresponding profiling of the sciences. This was fulfilled in the middle of the 20th century. Until then, the scientific treatment of the research topic “ traffic ” took place in the disciplines of economics or engineering, which was not yet further differentiated. In addition, there was a carrier-specific scientific development.

With the development of today's well-known transport system with its political, economic and technical importance, there was an overarching scientific consideration of the various aspects of mobility and traffic and thus the development of transport science (s). Important traffic scientists in this development were in Germany a. a. Friedrich List (1789–1846), Emil Sax (1845–1927), Richard van der Borght (1861–1926), Wilhelm Launhardt (1832–1918), Kurt Wiedenfeld (1871–1955), Richard Hennig (1874–1951), Ernst Esch (1881–1945), Anton Felix Napp-Zinn (1899–1965), Carl Pirath (1884–1955), Gerhart Potthoff (1908–1989), Fritz Voigt (1910–1993).

This cross-sectional area was / is scientifically treated at various institutions, B. at universities and other research institutions ( Fraunhofer Society , German Aerospace Center ) and scientific institutions ( German Transport Science Society ).

A specialty in the German-speaking area was the "Friedrich List" University of Transport in Dresden, where between 1952 and 1992 all modes of transport were scientifically treated. The former traffic college was integrated into the Technical University of Dresden on October 1st, 1992 as the faculty of traffic sciences "Friedrich List" . Further university transport science subjects have been established at the TU Berlin and the TU Braunschweig . In the field of transport economics, the Heilbronn University of Applied Sciences has the faculty “Business 1 - Business and Transport”. In addition, there are other individual chairs and institutes at universities and colleges in Germany that are active in traffic sciences.

German universities with transport science courses



Individual chairs

Degree programs for transport systems

Transportation Science or Science?

There is no agreement in the professional world whether there is a separate traffic science at all, because the above. For their part, disciplines are part of large areas of science. In addition, it is unclear whether it is a single traffic science or several traffic sciences. In particular, the economics / economics traditionally considered a single Transport Economics (meaning thereby the Transport Economics ). In addition, the view is that the transport fluid dynamics ( traffic science . See Transport Physics ) own transport science forms - regardless of sociological, economic, technological or technical constraints.

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