Understood as universal design, meaning a design of products, environments, programs and services in such a way that they can be used by all people. Accessibility at train stations refers to a wide range of aspects, from infor­mation and services to the structural design. The overall objective is to dismantle all attitude-­based and environmental barriers that prevent passengers from full, effective and equal participation in the rail system.

Airborne pollutants

Air pollution that can have a detrimental effect on the environment. An airborne pollutant can be caused naturally or by people, for example nitrogen oxides or sulphur oxides.



Interest-­­bearing security which is used to borrow funds on the capital market. Helps mid- to long-­­term debt financing by companies.


Bus kilometers (bus km)

The journey of a bus over a distance of 1 km.


Capacitity utilization

How much of possible capacity is actually used.

Capital employed

Includes property, plant and equipment (including intangible assets) and the net current assets.

Carbon Disclosure Project (CDP)

An international organization which runs a global disclosure system for investors, companies, cities, countries and regions, to measure and control their environmental impacts. It is now the world’s largest emissions register for business-­­related greenhouse gas emissions.

Clean Cargo Working Group (CCWG)

Working Group made up of the large cargo ship shipping companies and logistics firms (including DB Schenker) to improve the emissions of cargo ships at sea.


The entirety of the meteorological events (for example temperature, precipitation, wind), which describe the average condition of the atmosphere at a certain location for a duration of at least 30 years.

CO₂ equivalents (CO₂e, greenhouse gas emissions)

Gases that affect climate change, such as methane and nitrous oxide, which are converted into CO₂ based on their equivalent climate impact.

Combined transport

Combined transport of containers or entire

Commercial paper program (CP program)

Contractual framework or model documentation for the issue of short-­­term obligations.


An important component of corporate governance. This is understood as compliance with laws and directives, as well as voluntary codes of conduct in the company.

Contract logistics

Service packages comprising multiple logistics activities. The service provider not only organizes transport orders, but also independently assumes parts of the value-­­added chain.

Contracting organization

In general, the Federal states that order regio­nal rail passenger transport services from transport companies. This is carried out by a total of 27 different public transport authorities.

Costs of capital

Based on fair values as a weighted average of risk-­­adequate market returns for the minimum return requirement calculated for debt and
equity capital.

Credit facilities

Credit facilities granted by banks which can be utilized if necessary. These are firm commitments of credit lines with different maturities, some of which serve as liquidity reserves that are available at all times, while the umbrella credit lines are available in particular to foreign subsidiaries for working capital financing and as a guarantee line.

Credit rating

Classification of creditworthiness provided by rating agencies which impacts the refinancing options and expenses of a company.

Customer satisfaction

Satisfaction of customers and partners with a product/offer or a service, surveyed on a representative basis and evaluated on behalf of DB Group by independent market research institutes by telephone, in person or online.

Customer satisfaction index

Index generally rated on a grading scale of 1 (very satisfied) to 6 (very dissatisfied). These grades are converted and shown on a scale
of 1 to 100: (0 points = grade 6; 20 points = grade 5; 40 points = grade 4; 60 points = grade 3; 80 points = grade 2; 100 points = grade 1).


DB traction current

Electric tractiom current, with which DB Netze Energy Group’s intra-­­Group train operating companies are powered in Germany.

DBeco plus

Service for rail freight transport customers to have their goods transported without CO₂ emissions on all electrified lines within Germany and Austria.

Debt coverage

Key financial indicator that describes the relationship between the current financial strength and the financial obligations of the company (adjusted net debt).

Debt issuance program

Contractual framework or model documentation for the issuance of bonds. This guarantees a high degree of flexibility in issuing activity.

Derivative financial instruments (derivatives)

Financial instruments, the price or value of which depends on the future rates or prices of other goods, assets or reference values (interest rates, indices). These are contracts in which the contracting parties agree to buy, sell or swap assets at specified conditions in the future, or alternatively make value equalization payments.


Refers to the variation within the workforce with regard to gender, ethnicity and social background, age, religion, sexual orientation and identity, as well as physical and mental ability. Diversity also encompasses employees’ variety of perspectives, values, professional experience and skills.


Earnings before Interest and Taxes (EBIT)

Operating profit before interest and taxes.

Earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization (EBITDA)

Operating profit before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization.

Ecosystem (digital)

Ecosystems are networks of partners who work on common (or competing) value-­­added chains for a value proposition. In partnership-­based value chains, the created value exceeds the sum of the isolated value-­­added chains, for example, through a simple and better customer experience or increased efficiency in production.


EcoVadis is the operator of a collaborative platform that provides sustainability ratings for suppliers within global supply chains. The EcoVadis method comprises 21 criteria from the four areas: environment, fair labor and human rights, ethics and sustainable procurement.

Employee satisfaction index

As part of the Group-­­wide employee survey conducted every two years, the index is calculated using questions about motivation, job satisfaction and (emotional) loyalty to the com­pany on a scale from 1 to 5 (best possible value).

Employee survey

This has been conducted within DB Group, across the entire Group, every two years since 2012. The objective of the employee survey
is to give the individual teams, divisions, business units and the entire Group a valid assessment on various organizational framework conditions. Another objective of the survey is the subsequent improvement processes, which are triggered by the discussion of the results.

Employer attractiveness

Measured as a weighted average of the employer ranking in the main target groups, as determined by trendence – Europe’s leading research institute in employer branding, HR marketing and recruiting.

Energy mix

Composition of electricity broken down by type of energy generation (for example renewable energy, gas and other).

Equity method/at-­­equity accounting

Procedures for the accounting of subsidiaries which are not included in the consolidated financial statements on the basis of full consolidation with all equity and liabilities. The book value of the affiliated company is adjusted by the development of the pro rata equity in the holding.

Equity ratio

Key financial indicator based on the balance sheet structure: proportion of equity in the balance sheet total as a percentage.


Europe-­­wide, standardized train control system. The migration to ETCS affects both the infrastructure and the vehicles. ETCS can be realized on several levels, which depend, among other things, on the rail infrastructure and the desired speed.

Evaluation of facilities quality

To ensure maintenance funds are used according to demand and to assess improvements stemming from implemented measures, the condition of structural and technical facilities undergo periodic and event-­­based evaluations.

Existing network

Existing rail network and therefore core of the infrastructure.


Final energy

The energy form for which an end consumer receives an invoice, fo example the quantity of fuel added or the traction current obtained.

Floating rate note (FRN)

Bond with a variable interest rate.



Key financial indicator which, as a structural indicator, describes the ratio of net financial debt to equity as a percentage.

German Sustainability Code

Provides a framework for the reporting of non-­financial performance which can be used by organizations and companies of any size and legal form.

Global Reporting Initiative

An international organization which is committed to the dissemination and improvement of sustainability reporting. The GRI guidelines are regarded as the most widely used and most internationally recognized reporting standard for sustainability.

Greenhouse Gas (GHG) Protocol

A globally recognized standard for the qualification and management of greenhouse gas emissions which is used by many companies, non-­governmental organizations (NGOs) and governments.

Gross capital expenditures

Overall capital expenditures made in property, plant and equipment and intangible assets regardless of the type of financing.

Gross profit

Amount of revenue remaining after deduction of the variable (= sales-­­related) costs or direct (= contract-­­related) costs.


Health rate

Shows the share of labor that is not lost due to illness in relation to the overall labor and therefore only includes employees who are still paid a salary.

Hybrid bond

A corporate bond that is credited as equity under certain requirements within the framework of the IFRS accounting regulation. As a rule,
hybrid bonds have very long maturities or no fixed repayment amount, but can be terminated by the issuer after a defined minimum term has elapsed.


These are found in, for example, crude oil, natural gas or coal. Their emissions are regarded as harmful to the environment.



An accounting rule of the International Accounting Standards Board (IASB), which obligates listed companies balanced in accordance with IFRS, to record all lease agreements with a contract term of more than one year in their balance sheets. The IFRS 16 replaces the IAS 17 and the interpretations IFRIC 4, SIC 15 and SIC 27.

Interest-­­free loans

Loans from the Federal Government that have to be repaid, but are not interest-­­bearing. These result from financing contributions from the Federal Republic for capital expenditures for track expansion and replacement.

Intermodal competition

Competition between different modes of transport, for example between rail and air transport.

International Financial Reporting Standards (IFRS)

Internationally recognized accounting standard. Since 2002, IFRS has been regarded as the overall concept of standards adopted by the International Accounting Standards Board. Previously adopted standards are still cited as International Accounting Standards (IAS).

Interoperability (multi-­­system capability)

Ability to adapt rolling stock to different technical standards (for example track gauges or power systems) and therefore to run as seamlessly as possible between different rail networks in individual countries.

Intramodal competition

Competition within a mode of transport, for example within the railway sector.

Investment grants

Financing contributions from third parties in specified capital expenditure projects without future repayment requirements.

ISO 14064

International Standard, here: Part 1: Specification with guidance on the quantitative classification and reporting of greenhouse gas emissions and the removal of greenhouse gases at an organizational level.


Since March 2018 Oekom Research has been part of Institutional Shareholder Services (ISS). ISS ESG produces, among other things, research and ratings on companies and countries.


K brake shoe

Brake shoe made from composite materials (K), see also L brake shoes.


LL brake shoe

Brake shoe made from composites (LL: low noise, low friction), see also V brake shoe.

Local transport

Transport services with the products IRE, RB, RE and S-­­Bahn (metro).

Long-­­distance transport

Transport services with the products ICE and Intercity/EC.

Lost time injury frequency (LTIF)

Describes the relationship between accident frequency and hours actually worked based on one million working hours.


MSCI ESG ratings

MSCI ESG Research is a global provider of sustainability analyses and ratings. MSCI ESG ratings are aimed at measuring the resilience of a company against long-­­term, financially relevant ESG risks.


Net capital expenditures

Gross capital expenditures minus investment grants from third parties, for example for infrastructure capital expenditures.

Net financial debt

Balance from interest-­­bearing external liabilities and leasing liabilities as well as cash and cash equivalents and interest-­­bearing external receivables.

Nettable plan asseat

Assets that are netted against total pension obligations on the balance sheet.


Noise which disturbs people and the environment or is damaging to health.

Noise barrier

System of active noise abatement on rail lines, mostly made from materials such as aluminum, wood, concrete. New noise barriers are walls made from wire baskets filled with stones (gabions).

Noise prevention

Legal claim to noise remediation measures on new construction and expansion lines.

Noise reduction

Reduction of noise with active measures at the source (for example whisper brakes on freight cars) and to stop the spread (for example noise barriers), and passive noise remediation measures (for example soundproof windows).

Noise remediation program

Voluntary program of the Federal Government implemented by DB Group to reduce the noise on existing rail lines.


On-­­demand services

Services that are provided to the customer when they need and request them.

Operate Leases

Außerbilanzielle Finanzierungsinstrumente: gepachtete oder gemietete Vermögensgegenstände.

Operating income after interest

Profit figures that includes financing costs to assess profits in the long term (particularly relevant for infrastructure business units). Therefore, in comparison with EBIT, the net operating interest is also taken into account.

Overall punctuality

Covers all rail transport on DB Netz AG infrastructure at DB Netze Track.



Tiny portions of matter, right down to the smallest traces, such as dust or soot.

Passenger kilometers (pkm)

Unit of measurement for the volume sold in passenger transport: product of the number of passengers transported and the average travel distance.

Percentage of staffing needs covered

Represents the number of active staff, including part-­­time employees, trainees and dual degree students converted in full-­­time employees,
divided by the full-­­time staffing requirements, trainees and dual-­­degree trainees.

Preferred Carrier

Key transport partner (freight carrier) of our logistics provider DB Schenker.

Primary energy

Energy which is available in its original energy form or source, such as coal, natural gas, sun, wind and nuclear fuel.

Procurement volume

Net total of all order values from individual orders and batches from framework agreements that were concluded by the respective product areas.


Share of on-­­time stops in relation to all stops along and at the end of routes in Germany. A stop is considered punctual if the scheduled arrival time was exceeded by less than six minutes for passenger transport or less than 16 minutes for freight transport.


Renewable energies

Energy from sources that are theoretically unlimited in supply, such as water, wind or sunlight.

Renewable Energy Sources Act

German law to promote the supply of electricity from renewable energy.

Requirement plan

New construction and expansion lines integrated in the Federal Transport Infrastructure Plan.


Aid, fund, reserve, raw material.

Return on capital employed

Key performance indicator for value-­­based man­agement. Equals the return on the capital employed for business operations. Percentage ratio of (adjusted) EBIT to the capital employed.


Scope 1 -3

As part of carbon accounting based on the Greenhouse Gas (GHG) Protocol, emissions are divided into three scopes. For DB Group: Scope
1 = greenhouse emissions from our own vehicles with combustion drives, Scope 2 = traction current supply, Scope 3 = third-­­party emissions from business relationships, such as transport services of our subcontractors. Due to our business model, we report on the main transport-­related emissions within Scope 3.

Scope of consolidation

Group of subsidiaries of a group, which are included in the consolidated financial statements.

Senior bond

Bond that is operated in the event of insolvency before other issued bonds of the same company with a lower rank (for example hybrid bonds) and therefore has a higher level of security, but also a lower interest rate.

Soot particles

Dust-­­like emissions arising from the com­bustion of diesel fuels. Diesel emissions also include particulate matter.


Relative to a specific (reference) size, for example based on the volume sold.


Interest groups and represen­tatives.

Station pricing system

Transparent and non-­­discriminatory pricing system for the use of passenger stations. The level of station prices depends largely on the performance level and level of equipment at the respective station.

Stationary facilities

Buildings and facilities such as plants and train stations. 

Supply chain

The stages of production illustrated as an orderly sequence of activities. These activities add value, consume resources and are connected with each other in processes.

Supply reliability

The stages of production illustrated as an orderly sequence of activities. These activities add value, consume resources and are connected with each other in processes.


Guiding principle for the compatibility of environmental, social and economic objectives for sustainable and generationally compatible development.

Sustainable Development Goals

Political targets set by the United Nations with a view to ensuring sustainable development
on an economic, social and ecological level. The goals took effect on January 1, 2016, and run until 2030, applying to all member states.


Service provider specializing in the analysis and assessment of the companies’ performance in the field of sustainability.


The basic concept for financial instruments that involve the exchange of future cash flows. This allows financial risks (interest, currencies, raw materials) to be hedged in a targeted manner.


Ton kilometers

Measurement for volume sold in freight transport: product of the freight carried (tons) and the distance travelled (kilometers).


Propulsion to move trains. Depending on the energy source, drive unit and power transmission, a distinction is made, among other things, between electric, diesel electric and diesel hydraulic traction. Traction units that, in addition to electric traction, also have diesel-­assisted traction are also referred to as hybrid vehicles.

Traction current mix

Composition of the traction current of all train operating companies in Germany supplied by DB Netze Energy (in addition to other suppliers) through the traction current grid.

Train kilometers

Equal to the journey of a train over a distance of 1 km.

Train kilometers

Equal to the journey of a train over a distance of 1 km.

Train path

The share of the rail track capacity that is required for a train to be able to travel between two places in a set time.

Train-­­path pricing system

Fee system of DB Netz AG including the train-­path use by customers (in particular those of train operating companies) depending on the relevant market segments and the train-path kilometers traveled.

Transport contract

Agreement between the contracting organi­zation and train operating company on the provision of regional passenger transport services.


United Nations Global Compact

The world’s largest initiative for responsible corporate management. On the basis of its ten universal principles, it pursues the vision of an inclusive and sustainable global economy to the benefit of all people, communities and markets, today and in the future.


V brake shoe

Brake shoe made from composites (V) which halves the rolling noise of freight cars. Collective term for K and LL brake shoes.

Vegetation control

Checking and cutting/removing vegetation in and on the tracks using mechanical and chemical (only in the immediate vicinity of the tracks) procedures.


Streckenart der Verkehrsmittel, wie beispielsweise Straße oder Schiene.

Volume produced

Distance covered by train operating companies on the rail network. Unit of measurement: train-­­path kilometers (train-­­path km).

Volume sold

Key performance indicator measuring the service provided in passenger and freight transport. Units of measurement: passenger kilometers (pkm), ton kilometers (tkm).


Well-to- Wheel

Method for calculating emissions considering the entire chain of effects from the extraction and provision to the conversion of energy
(in vehicles or facilities).

Whisper brake

See K and LL brake shoe.

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