Research and Development goes hand in hand with deployment and is a major tool in strategic planning.
Firstly, research, development and innovation activities provide technology development and new solutions for ITS infrastructures and services. These new solutions need to be considered in strategic planning in terms of whether, when and by whom they should be utilised.
Secondly, research evaluating the impacts of ITS on behaviour, traffic, the economy, transport policy objectives and society as a whole, provides knowledge on the effectiveness of the new solutions, and paves the way for full-scale deployment and standardisation efforts. An ITS Strategy together with its action plan can be assessed during its development process - particularly when prioritising objectives and the actual actions.
Thirdly, research can provide the foundations of ITS Strategies or Framework Plans - by studying user needs, likely technology developments (technology foresights) and possible future scenarios.
Finally, an ITS research strategy should ideally accompany an ITS Deployment Strategy. This has been the case, for instance, in the USA where a specific ITS Strategic Research Plan was produced at the same time as the ITS strategy (See ITS Strategic Research Plan). The research plan should reflect the priorities of the medium-term and long-term ITS strategies.