Monitoring and Harmonisation of National Access Points

Since its start in 2016 the EU EIP has published five annual reports about the status of the National Access Points (NAP) across Europe. The annual NAP report 2020 is the final one, describing the deployment status of NAPs in Europe as well as harmonising work on metadata, common features, data standards and common formats, harmonised declaration of compliance, and other issues, related to the Commission Delegated Regulations for ITS Directive priority actions.

Achievements

The annual survey per country was completed by responsible ministries, National Access Points and related National Bodies. In total 25 MS, Norway and the United Kingdom have responded to the final survey in 2020, an almost 100% coverage of the status of NAPs in the European Union.

EU EIP NAP Annual reports can be down loaded here:

Metadata Catalogue

An important harmonisation item is Metadata, describing the datasets in NAPs, in structured and agreed manner. European NAP partners, under the coordination of EU EIP, have developed an update of the “Coordinated Metadata Catalogue”. This work is a blueprint for Metadata structures at each individual NAP in Europe. It defines a common, minimum Metadata set, in particular 32 Metadata elements, including their description, types and obligation levels.

It is considering all data and information domains of the EU Directive and the respective Delegated Regulations. The current update of the “Catalogue” also covers multi-modal travel data and services, according to Delegated Regulation (EU) No 2017/1926. The “Metadata Catalogue” is available here, including the accompanying two annexes: annex 1 and annex 2. In addition, some background information on the “Catalogue”, including a slide deck, is available here.

A further outcome of the Metadata harmonisation activity is a Metadata Guideline for NAP deployers, discussing alternative Metadata approaches for individual NAP environments, taking into account higher-level considerations. This Guideline is available here.

Metadata – interoperability with other data domains

The world of Metadata is evolving.  Today, everyone speaks about interoperability, harvesting and linking of Metadata. While the “Catalogue” is a proprietary approach to define Metadata elements, a more advanced and interoperable approach is now needed. This way, we want to bring the “Catalogue” to a new stage, allowing interoperability with other data domains, in particular open data, and reusing established Metadata techniques.

One established technique is the Resource Description Framework (RDF) and the RDF-based DCAT-AP Metadata specification, as developed by a joint initiative of EU organizations:

https://joinup.ec.europa.eu/collection/semantic-interoperability-community-semic/solution/dcat-application-profile-data-portals-europe

The NAP working group has now drafted a DCAT-AP extension for the NAP domain, namely “napDCAT-AP”. Here, we will build upon the DCAT-AP specification and adopt it to the particular domain of NAP Metadata.

The next figure shows how some essential elements from the DCAT-AP data model are mapped to the NAP domain:

Based on this mapping, “napDCAT-AP” adopts and adds elements to the DCAT-AP data model, with the goal to describe NAP-specific Metadata.  It is further compatible with the “Coordinated Metadata Catalogue”. For more details on the “napDCAT-AP” concept, see this  Powerpoint presentation.

A draft of the “napDCAT-AP” specification can be accessed here: https://eueip.github.io/napDCAT-AP/

Common Features and Level of Service of NAPs

This document describes a set of NAP features, including a checklist, intended to support good practice, help make existing and future NAP services available to a wider audience, facilitate data sharing, and promote the discovery of datasets. The features can be applied to all NAP structures. The report NAP Common Features and Level of Service can be downloaded here.

Uniform Declaration of Compliance

Uniform declaration forms serve the purpose of reducing the administrative burden for data providers as well as for the National Bodies. These forms were developed in cooperation with TISA (for SRTI and RTTI) and ESPORG (for SSTP). All forms are supported with an introduction letter and a list of definitions:

  • Safety Related Traffic Information Services – download
  • Real Time Traffic Information Services – download
  • Safe and Secure Truck Parking Areas – download

NAP and National Body Harmonisation Group

This community of NAP and NB operators was established in Utrecht at Rijkswaterstaat during the ITS Forum 2018. At 30 October 2019 a Meet-the-expert event took place to strengthen the network and cooperation of experts. List of topics discussed. Follow this link (movie) to get an impression of this successful event.

Meet-the-expert-event. NAP and NB operators from 14 different countries met at the LEF Future Centre of Rijkswaterstaat. Photo credits: Gab Franken

On 30 April 2020 a web conference was organized for the community of National Access Points and National Bodies. No less than 57 participants from over 20 countries participated in this online event. Relevant documents of this meeting:

–        PowerPoint of meeting 30 April 2020

–        Summary Report of meeting 30 April 2020

–        Position paper NAP and National Body Harmonisation Group – Feb. 2020

–        Concept paper of DG Move – Coordination mechanism to federate the National Access Points established under the ITS Directive.

Early 2021 this group was involved in the preparation of a proposal on the Program Support Action ‘Implementation of a coordination mechanism to federate the NAPs’ which resulted in a new EU platform named NAPCORE (www.napcore.eu). 

Website European Commission

A number of EIP NAP achievements are published on the EC website as well like the Metadata Catalogue; EU EIP SRTI & RTTI data Quality Package; and the self-declaration forms’.

https://ec.europa.eu/transport/themes/its/road/action_plan/traffic-information_en

The NAP map

The NAP map is interactive graphical overview of all active NAPs in Europe. It directs to all NAPs in operation and shows details of the related National Bodies. The data is based on the outcomes of the EU EIP NAP 2020 survey.

Datex II usage in NAPs

Based on the annual EIP NAP survey the DATEX II platform published a map showing per country the use of DATEX II in their National Access Points for SRTI, RTTI, SSTPA and MMTIS. Link to Datex II usage in NAPs

ITS Congress 2018 papers

  • “National Access Points: Challenges for Success” can be downloaded here.
  • “National Access Points and Municipalities – Best Practices from the German National Access Point MDM” can be downloaded here.

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