Glossary

Asset ManagementDescribes the systematic and coordinated activities through which a rail infrastructure manager optimally manages its assets, e.g. tracks or signalling, and their performance, risks and expenditures over their life cycle.
Connecting Europe Facility (CEF)A key EU funding instrument to promote growth, jobs and competitiveness through targeted infrastructure investment at European level. 
Contractual agreementAn agreement, or mutatis mutandis, within the framework of administrative measures.
Committee on the Environment, Public Health and Food Safety (ENVI)Committee of the European Parliament which deals with environmental policy and environmental protection measures, public health and food safety measures.
Committee on Industry, Research and Energy (ITRE)Committee of the European Parliament, whose areas of responsibility relate to industry, information technology, and telecommunications. It also coordinates European space policy and therefore has ties with the European Space Agency.
Committee on the Internal Market and Consumer Protection (IMCO)Committee of the European Parliament responsible for the legislative provisions of the EU concerning the free movement of goods, services and professionals, customs policy, harmonisation and consumer protection.
Committee on Transport and Tourism (TRAN)The Committee on Transport and Tourism is a Committee of the European Parliament which deals with the policy of the EU in the fields of rail and road transport, inland and maritime shipping and aviation, traffic regulations, the development of the TEN-T network, road safety and the relations with international transport organisations.
Convention concerning International Carriage by Rail (COTIF)International Convention concluded in 1980 aiming at developing uniform systems of law which could apply to the carriage of passengers and freight in international rail traffic.
European Committee for Standardisation / European Committee for Electro-technical Standardisation (CEN/CENELEC)Organisations responsible for defining technical standards for the European Single Market in all areas of economic activity.
European Court of Justice (ECJ)The highest court in the European Union in matters of European Union law. As a part of the Court of Justice of the European Union, it is tasked with interpreting EU law and ensuring its equal application across all EU Member States.
European Fund for Strategic Investments (EFSI)an initiative to help overcome the current investment gap in the European Union, jointly launched by the European Investment Bank Group and the European Commission. It aims to mobilise private investment in strategically important projects for the EU.
European Rail Research Advisory Council (ERRAC)Body that coordinates rail research at the European level.
European Rail Traffic Management System (ERTMS)A project aimed at replacing the different national rail control-command and signalling systems in Europe with a single system.
European Union Agency for Railways (ERA)An agency of the European Commission responsible for promoting interoperability in the European railway system.
First Railway PackageA package of European measures designed to stimulate the European railway sector by encouraging competition and separating infrastructure management from operations.
Fourth Railway PackageThe Fourth Railway Package is a set of proposals put forward by the Commission in 2013 with the aim of improving rail transport in Europe. It encompasses measures aimed at liberalising the European domestic passenger market, strengthening the functions and independence of the rail infrastructure manager in Europe, reinforcing the role of the European Union Agency for Railways and streamlining the certification and authorisation procedures.
Framework agreementA legally binding general agreement under public or private law, setting out the rights and obligations of an applicant and the infrastructure manager in relation to the infrastructure capacity to be allocated and the charges to be levied over a period longer than one working timetable.
Group of Representative Bodies (GRB)Body with several other railway association supporting the rail sector’s input to the Agency work programme and its effect on safety and interoperability.
Interoperability constituent (IC)Any equipment incorporated into a subsystem, upon which the interoperability of the rail system depends – covers both tangible objects and intangible objects such as software.
Infrastructure Manager (IM)Any body or firm responsible for establishing, managing and maintaining railway infrastructure, including traffic management and control-command and signalling. The functions of the IMs on a network or part of a network may be allocated to different bodies or firms.
Intergovernmental Organisation for International Carriage by Rail (OTIF)The Intergovernmental Organisation for International Carriage by Rail governs international rail transport. As of 2013, 46 European, African, and Near Eastern states are members.
Sector Forum Rail (SFR)Joint co-ordination group of CEN, CENELEC and ETSI with participation of railway stakeholder organisations and in cooperation with the EC and the Agency.
Multi-annual Contract (MAC)A medium to long term agreement between the state and its infrastructure manager outlining the funding to be given to the IM in exchange for agreed levels of service/performance.
Multi-annual Financial Framework (MFF)A seven-year framework regulating the EU’s annual budget.
National Safety Authority (NSA)The national body entrusted with the tasks regarding railway safety by a Member State in order to ensure a unified safety regime in Europe.
Network of Representative Bodies (NRB)An ERA working group encompassing members of the GRB to meet representatives of the Agency.
Performance schemePart of the infrastructure charging scheme which is aimed at encouraging railway undertakings and infrastructure managers to minimise disruption and improve the performance of the railway network. It may include penalties for actions which disrupt the operation of the network, compensation for undertakings which suffer from disruption and bonuses that reward better than planned performance.
Policy and Management Committee (PMC)EIM body, consisting of at least one delegate from every EIM member. The PMC shall be the normal mechanism through which member companies exercise day-to-day influence in the activities and statements of EIM.
Public Private Partnership (PPP)A financial arrangement where a private investor works together with the public services to build or operate infrastructure.
Rail Net Europe (RNE)A body grouping European infrastructure managers to allow the planning of international train paths. 
Rail Market Monitoring Scheme (RMMS)Instrument through which the European Commission monitors the technical and economic conditions and market developments of European rail transport.
Railway Interoperability and Safety Committee (RISC)Committee that holds the deciding vote on whether a draft TSI, CSM, CSIor CST can be adopted by the European Commission. The committee consists of representatives from the Member States and is chaired by the European Commission.
Rail Standardisation Coordination Platform for Europe (RASCOP)
Platform contributing to streamlining the European standardisation landscape with the EC and stakeholders.
Railway UndertakingAny public or private undertaking, the principal business of which is to provide services for the transport of goods and/or passengers by rail with a requirement that the undertaking ensure traction; this also includes undertakings which provide traction only.
Regulatory bodyA body established by Member States responsible for monitoring competition in the railway market and to which an applicant has the right to appeal in cases where it believes it has been unfairly treated, discriminated against or is any other way aggrieved, in particular against decisions adopted by an infrastructure manager or where appropriate a railway undertaking.
Rolling Stock (RS or RST)Vehicles which operate on the railway, such as locomotives, freight wagons or coaches. 
Safety Management System (SMS)A set of rules, processes and procedures that infrastructure managers and railway undertakings are required to establish in order to control all risks related to their activities and ensure a safe management of their operations on a continuous basis.
Sectoral Social Dialogue (SSD)Instrument of political governance aiming to foster dialogue between the social partners at a European level, acting as a forum for consultation on the drafting of EU policies on employment and social affairs.
Single European Railway Area Committee (SERAC)Committee that is composed of Member States and chaired by the Commission. It was set up a few years ago as a mechanism of control of the Commission which enjoys powers to enact legislation without going through the normal procedure i.e. consulting the Parliament and the Council.
Technical Specification for Interoperability (TSI)Specifications drafted by the Agency and adopted by the EC, to ensure the interoperability of the trans-European rail system.
Technical Steering Group (TSG)EIM body, consisting of senior technical managers involved in the Agency’s TSI process work or other areas. The TSG’s task is to monitor and review the work of EIM’s Working Groups and to decide EIM’s positions on specific technical issues.
Trans-European Transport Network
(TEN-T)
A network of highways, railway lines, inland waterways and other transport networks, which is in part funded by the European Union. The goal of the TEN-T program is to connect all European regions to the single market.
Working Group (WG)Basic EIM unit in which experts from EIM’s member organisations work on technical aspects of the rail system. WGs report to the TSG and advise EIM’s deciding bodies on technical issues. Most EIM Working Groups second speakers to the Agency Work Groups.
Working Party (WP)A significant part of the ERA’s workgroups are called “Working Parties”. Working Parties are dedicated to the drafting of specific TSIs, CSMs, CSI, CST etc. with experts from rail stakeholder organisations.
We connect Europe
2021 EUROPEAN YEAR OF RAIL
We connect Europe
2021 EUROPEAN YEAR OF RAIL