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Workshop Paper / Transport

2nd Florence Air Forum Summary – Gate to Gate Network Management

Author(s): ROSA Andrea, FINGER Matthias

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The present document summarises the content of the presentations delivered during the 2nd Florence Air Forum as well as the ensuing discussions. The document is divided in two sections: summaries of the presentations and synthesis of the debate.

Presentations were delivered by several air transport regulation stakeholders, including a representative of a Ministry, a representative of Eurocontrol, representatives of associations of stakeholders, representatives of ANSPs and airports, as well as academics. Each of them has offered his/her view on the evolving network perspective in European air transport management and on the shift in approach which performance objectives and the network perspective increasingly require. Particular attention was given to the integration of service provision along with network–wide targets to be attained via cooperation of actors that may have contrasting interests.

The discussion was kicked-off by the following initial questions:

  • how can performance within the new network framework be delivered?
  • how may stakeholders - e.g., the Network Manager, the Performance Review Board, FABs, ANSPs, airports, airlines - interact efficiently? 
  • how can airports be effectively integrated into the ATM system and how can capacity be aligned?

It was clear that actors are still adapting to the new governance system being established and that many steps forward are required in order to deliver integrated gate-to-gate air traffic management. Participants stated their support to the development of the Single European Sky, but also described resistances and difficulties encountered in some cases.

The roles of the Network Manager –at the time of the Forum Eurocontrol had been nominated for this function– and of the different actors were illustrated and debated. Agreed targets at EU level and the elaboration of plans for local targets were also discussed with emphasis on costs efficiency and -of course- safety. Practical difficulties and concerns with the governance structure and the ways targets may be achieved were also described. Looking further than the current regulatory period, the need for strong and independent supranational regulators was advocated by some.

The way forward seems to be via transparent cooperation made possible by following the right procedures and by confidence-building among actors. In this context, the proposed legal framework for sharing information via SWIM was described. The way one FAB is developing working arrangements and procedures for internal and external operations was a further example of the evolution in that direction.

Airports underscored their support to the SES development, also as a way to address current and foreseen issues in providing their services and in view of coordination of their own and en-route capacity.