Railway Timetabling Based on Systematic Follow-up on Realized Railway Operations


  • Bernd Schittenhelm Bane Danmark
  • Troels Richter Bane Danmark




Railway timetables, timetable process, systematic follow-up, realized operations


This paper shows that the use of systematic follow-up on realized railway operations has potential to improve current and future timetables. After describing the present timetabling process at the main Danish Infrastructure Manager, Rail Net Denmark, it is concluded that systematic follow-up on realized railway operations is not yet a formal integrated part of the timetabling process. As Rail Net Denmark uses timetabling guidelines from the European professional organization of infrastructure managers - Rail Net Europe – the lack of systematic follow-up may very well exist elsewhere in Europe.

Following the introduction, an initial theoretical approach to systematic follow-up on realized operations is described. Focus is on identifying delay patterns in regards to individual train numbers, train categories, time periods and geography or combinations hereof.

Subsequently theory is put into practice. First, the current system for collecting data on operational performance is described as well as methods on how to aggregate this. Six chosen cases are examined to cover the four focus points and combinations hereof. Detailed results are shown in Appendices 1-6. The analyses prove existing ideas about delay patterns in today’s railway operations.

Finally it can be concluded that the timetabling process at Rail Net Denmark has a potential for improvements by integrating systematic follow-up on realized operations in the process. By introducing closer cooperation between timetabling and operations monitoring specialists regarding systematic analyses throughout the entire timetabling process there is a potential to improve valid and future timetables.