Institute for Transport Studies (ITS)


Ki-Joon Kim

Country: India

Name: Arnab Roy

Company: EMBARQ India

Position: Senior Project Associate

ITS Course: MSc Transport Planning and the Environment, 2008

In my present job profile, I provide technical and program management support for city bus operations and the bus rapid transit (BRT) pilot project in Indore, Madhya Pradesh, India. I am based in Indore where my primary focus is working with the Atal Indore City Transport Services Ltd. (AICTSL), providing both day-to-day and strategic technical advice and hand-holding support to help improve the city bus service operations and streamline and optimize the BRT services.

A large part of my work involves working closely with various city departments ranging from the Development Authority, the Municipal Corporation, the District Administration and Traffic Police. In the scenario where most Tier-2 cities in the country are not experienced in public transport operations, one of my basic jobs is to prevent inefficient decision making by the administration.

My experiences at ITS not only helped me in my present job, but have by far helped me in the various positions that I have worked in during my working career so far. There are a few main benefits of studying at ITS that I feel have really helped me grow as a professional.

  • The innovative and hands on teaching at ITS helped me understand transport issues from both sides of the table, i.e. from the perspective of the executing agency, as well as from the public perspective. The modules in policy planning and introduction to transport planning were great eye-openers for young transport planner such as myself, and helped me be prepared for the real challenges in the work environment.
  • The ability to choose modules to suit each individual’s personal career aspirations in effect widens the portfolio of courses offered by ITS. This flexibility helped me to choose a mix of modules that has helped me gain a more strategic view of transport planning and has thus helped me evolve into a managerial role.
  • Studying at ITS helped secure my first job with Atkins in the UK, post my Masters course. I cannot deny the fact that working in the UK transport planning environment helped me grow substantially as a transport planning professional, which has in turn helped me secure my subsequent jobs as well.

I chose my ITS course and Leeds University because ITS is the foremost institute in the world for transport related study and research, with world-class faculty, which make ITS one of the names to reckon with in the field of transport research.

The resources available at ITS and the University at large such as the vast library, the IT resources immensely helped the productivity as a student, which were greatly beneficial towards successful completion of the course

The wide spectrum of students in terms of nationalities that study every year at ITS is, in my opinion, one of the most underrated yet greatest advantages of studying there. The regular interactions along with formal group work submissions were brilliant sources for first hand insights into the transport and urban development scenarios across the world, and how planners from different countries have attempted to address common themed urban / transport issues.

For students interested in this course, I would encourage them to really evaluate the various modules available – both compulsory and optional – properly so that they are able to set the most appropriate direction for themselves. For international students, studying at ITS and living in Leeds is a great opportunity – both academically, as well as a highly enriching experience personally. One word of caution is that since the Masters at ITS is a 1-year course, aspiring students should prepare well, and hit the ground running so that they are able to keep up with demanding course requirements and deadlines.