Institute for Transport Studies (ITS)



Sharif S Mohammad

Country: Belgium

Name: Vincent Flament

Company: recently finished a consultancy assignment at the African Bank of Development, Tunisia

Position: recently finished a Young Consultant assignment

ITS Course: MA Transport Economics, 2007

I have just finished a consultancy assignment working for the first time in transport in developing nations, and I am aiming to pursue a further path in this direction.

ITS is one of the few universities in the UK, and the world, to offer a specialist Masters degree in Transport Economics. As such, it provides distinctive opportunities for graduates following this course to distinguish themselves. Whilst Transport projects and systems have in the past been nearly exclusively created/run by engineers, the focus on value for money and resource optimization nowadays means that Transport Economists are in high demand, not only in the UK, but also worldwide, both in developed and developing nations.

ITS is also a well-respected institute. Its name recognition is high in many countries and does give the candidate certain credentials. This recognition has helped me obtaining a full time position in the US. I would also say that ITS being a relatively small institute, it is always easy to contact staff for various queries even 5 years later. Everybody at ITS is always very helpful and prompt to reply. This is helpful as many employers require some academic credentials.

I chose my ITS course and Leeds University because I have always been fascinated by transportation systems and in particular rail networks. As such, it was an excellent opportunity to follow an interest of mine whilst gaining some academic skills that would enable me to develop a career and distinguish myself.

My advice to new students interested in this course is that I would tell them to expect to be challenged (it is not an easy course). I would also tell them to think broadly and envisage an international career, as transport economists are in high demand worldwide. Also, I would tell them to remain patient. This degree does not imply an easy career: experience is key in this sector, after obtaining a degree from ITS, one still needs years of work experience in order to establish himself/herself. Finally, I would stress the need acquire excellent writing skills before/during/after course at ITS as well as to develop advanced Excel skills as they will be highly required/needed throughout the student’s future career.