Professor Ronghui Liu

Professor Ronghui Liu


Professor Ronghui Liu, Professor of Networks and Transport Operations, at the Institute for Transport Studies (ITS), University of Leeds, UK.  She received her BSc from Peking University and PhD from Cambridge University.  Before joining ITS Leeds, she was a Research Fellow at University College London, and while at ITS, she was seconded to head the Transport Modelling Division at TRL, UK in 2005.  She served as an Associate Editor for journal IEEE Transaction on Intelligent Transportation Systems, and Member of Editorial Board of IET Journal of Intelligent Transport. Her research areas span a number of themes in the field of transport studies: in vehicle dynamics and traffic microsimulaton model developments; in traffic control theory and algorithms; in travel behaviour and Intelligent mobility; in stochastic models and reliability analysis; in public transport operations and controls; in timetabling and schedule coordination; and in train control and railway traffic management systems.  She is particularly interested in the interrelationships between these themes, and methodologies for estimation, design and evaluation of their network-wide effects.

Employment History

  • Professor and Director of International Activities, Institute for Transport Studies, University of Leeds (1994 – present)
  • Head of Transport Modelling, TRL Ltd (06.2005 – 07.2005, part-time split with ITS Leeds)
  • Research Fellow, Mullard Space Science Laboratory, University College London (1991 – 1993)

Professional Engagements (limited to last five years)

Editorial and conferences:

  • Associate Editor, IET Journal of Intelligent Transport Systems (2017 – date)
  • Member of Editorial Board, IET Journal of Traffic and Transportation Engineering (2014 – date)
  • Member of Editorial Board, IET Journal of Intelligent Transport Systems (2014-2017)
  • Associate Editor, IEEE Transaction on Intelligent Transportation Systems (2009-2016)
  • Guest Editor of Special Issue on artificial transportation systems and simulation, IEEE Transaction on Intelligent Transportation Systems. 2014.

International Conference Committee Memberships:

  • Scientific Committee for INFORMS Transportation and Logistics Society First Triennial Conference, Chicago, USA, 26 – 29 July 2017
  • Programme Committee for the 2017 IEEE International Conference on Service Operations and Logistics, and Informatics, Bari, 18 – 20 September 2017
  • Programme Committee for the 18th Portuguese Artificial Conferences, Porto, 5 – 8 September 2017
  • Organising Committee for 19th IEEE International Conference on Intelligent Transportation System, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, 1 – 4 Nov 2016
  • Programme Committee for 2016 IEEE International Conference on Intelligent Rail Transportation, Birmingham, UK, 23 – 25 August 2016
  • Organising Committee for 18th IEEE International Conference on Intelligent Transportation Systems, Gran Canarias, Spain, 15 – 18 Sept 2015

Panel Members:

  • Expert Evaluator for the EU Shift2Rail Joint Undertaking, 2016 – present
  • Expert Evaluator for the State Education Development Agency of Latvia and European Regional Development Fund. February 2017
  • Expert Witness for the London Assembly Transport Committee Panel Meeting on London Bus Network Design, 11th January 2017
  • Expert Evaluator for the Academic Appointment Committee, KTH Royal Institute of Technology, Sweden, May 2016, Oct 2012.

PhD Students:

On-going PhD projects

  • Naphat Ketphat: Operation Control for Train Virtual Coupling System

  • Weiming Zhao: Modelling the Impact of Vehicle Automation and Communication Systems to Traffic Flow and Control.
  • Tianli Tang: Bus Schedule based on Meteorological Impacts.
  • Mahmound Al-Khazaleh: Estimation Travel Time of Urban Roads using Bluetooth Data.
  • Ying Wang: Incorporating Weather Impact in Train Dispatching.
  • Tamas Nadudvari: Transit Assignment Models with Aggregated Observed Journey Time
  • Joel Dodsworth: Devlopment of Traffic Signal Control Algorithms to Achieve Network Stability for Over-Saturated Traffic Conditions.

Completed PhD students

  • Andyka Kusuma: Modelling Driving Behaviour at Motorway Weaving Sections. 2015.
  • Qian Fu: Modelling Route Choice Behaviour with Incomplete Data: an Application to the London Underground. 2014.  Special Honourary Mentionat University Transport studies Group Annual Conference 2014; Runner-up for the HKSTS Outstanding Student Paper Award 2012.
  • Nurul Hidayati: The Impact of the School Safety Zone on Passenger Car Equivalent Values in Indonesian Urban Roads. 2013
  • Yaron Hollander: The Cost of Bus Travel Time Variability. 2007. Winner of the Neil Mansfield Award for the Best Paper by a Young Author, European Transport Conference 2005.
  • N C Balijepalli:  A Stochastic Process Model for Dynamic Traffic Assignment. 2006
  • Jiao Wang: A Merging Model for Motorway Traffic. 2006


  • Director of International Activities

Research interests

Key Research Interest

  • Mathematical modelling, computer simulation and optimisation of transportation systems
  • Traffic signal design, optimization and evaluation
  • Public transport reliability analysis, real-time control methods
  • Management response to weather impact on transportation systems
  • Railway traffic and network simulation
  • Optimisation of train timetables and speed profiles
  • ERTMS, ATO, DAS, Moving Block, Virtual Coupling
  • Traffic microsimulation and network modelling, DRACULA model development and application (

Research Awards:

On-Going Research Projects

  • OptiYard - Optimised Real-Time Yard and Network Management. EU Shift2Rail (2017 - 2019), €1,499,900. Leeds Principal Investigator. (
  • Energy-Efficient Automatic Train Operation. Royal Academy of Engineering (2017 - 2019), £99,363. Leeds PI.

Completed Projects

  • RAPPORT - Real-time Accurate Positioning and Protection of Rail Transport. Innovate UK (2017 - 2018), £305,506, Leeds PI
  • DITTO - Developing Integrated Tools for Optimized Railway Systems. RSSB (2014 - 2017), £905,000. Leeds PI. (
  • Network Rail Impact Acceleration Account, EPSRC (2015 - 2016), £45,560, PI.
  • NETMIS - Network Tools for Intervention Modelling in Sepsis. Technology Strategy Board (2013 - 2014), £346,800. Co-I. ( )
  • Challenging Established Rules for Train Control Through a Fault Tolerance Approach. EPSRC and RSSB (2011 - 2014), £337,600.  Leeds PI
  • Modelling Motorway Merge Phase I: Empirical Study.  Highways England (2010 - 2011), with Jacobs Consultancy. Leeds PI.
  • TransEuropean Transport Network Planning Methodology. EU (2009 - 2010). €179,100. Co-I.
  • MULTITUTE European Cooperation in Science and Technology project to provide methods and tools for supporting the use, calibration, and validation of traffic simulation models. Co-I.
  • Guidance for modelling motorway merge. Department for Transport (2007 - 2008), £40,700. PI
  • A model to assess public transport reliability. EPSRC and Department for Transport (2003 - 2006).  PI.
  • International Incoming Short Visits Grant. Royal Society (2006), £1,480. PI
  • PROSPER - Project for Research on Speed Adaptation Policies on European Roads, EU (2002 - 2006). Co-I
  • A sustainable travel modal choice for Beijing - Phase II. Volvo Research Foundation (01.2006 - 12.2007). Leeds PI.
  • A sustainable travel modal choice for Beijing - Phase I. Funded by the VOLVO Research Foundation (01.2005 - 12.2005). Leeds PI.
<h4>Research projects</h4> <p>Any research projects I'm currently working on will be listed below. Our list of all <a href="">research projects</a> allows you to view and search the full list of projects in the faculty.</p>


  • PhD, Radio Astronomy, Cavendish Laboratory, University of Cambridge, 1991
  • BSc (First Class), Astrophysics, Department of Astronomy, Peking University, 1987

Student education


Current Taught Courses:

             TRAN5020M   Principles of Transport Modelling                                

TRAN5291M   Traffic Network Modelling

Previous Taught Courses:

TRAN5031M   Transport Data Collection and Analysis                        

             TRAN5200M   Traffic Control Systems                                               

             TRAN5220M   Transport Microsimulation Models                               

             CIVE5590M    International Environmental Impact Assessment

Continued Professional Development courses to transport professionals

              Principles of Traffic Microsimulation

              Introduction to DRACULA

              Introduction to SATURN

              Intermediate SATURN

Research groups and institutes

  • Spatial Modelling and Dynamics

Current postgraduate researchers

<h4>Postgraduate research opportunities</h4> <p>We welcome enquiries from motivated and qualified applicants from all around the world who are interested in PhD study. Our <a href="">research opportunities</a> allow you to search for projects and scholarships.</p>