Attended a very interesting workshop at Stanford last week on the near and long term future of Automated Vehicles organized by the Transportation Research Board (TRB) and intended to both inform as well as gather Research Needs Statements in a variety of subject areas to help focus public and private research over the coming years.

The presentations and discussions ranged from technology (progress and hurdles in sensors, human-machine-interface, V2X, data ownership & privacy) to urban planning implications (smaller lanes, denser & faster roads, fewer parking spaces) to legal issues (liability, privacy, cybersecurity) to insurance to government involvement (how and when should government lead, regulate or not) The time horizon was also quite broad, from European robotic city bus trials in dense urban environments next year to fully automatic cars & urban impacts 25 years out.


The conference included speakers and attendees from industry (OEMs and Tier1s from around the world), academia, and government (NHTSA, DOT, FHA) as well as trade associations (SAE, TRB etc.) and some vendors.

In addition to plenary sessions, there were 2-day long breakout sessions with about 15-40 participants who discussed and prioritized research needs.

There were several special sessions:

  1. SAE On-Road Automated Vehicle Standards (ORAVS) Committee
  2. U.S. DOT Public Stakeholder Engagement Meeting
  3. California-Specific Topics in Road Vehicle Automation
  4. Strategy Day on Emerging Trends in Public Transportation and Vehicle Automation

A variety of researchers presented their work – in – progress at the poster session. There was an open house at the Stanford CARS garage, where amongst many other demonstrations, Cliff Nass’s group showed off their new CHIme Lab Driving Simulator. Bosch, Google and AutonomouStuff (sensor vendor) were showing off their autonomous vehicles & offering attendees rides.

Slides are available for the plenary sessions (below) and some of the breakout sessions & posters (via links above).

These I found particularly interesting:

  • Dirk Rossberg, BMW | Slides
  • Joakim Svensson, Volvo Group (trucks) | Slides
  • Adriano Alessandrini, University of Rome La Sapienza (CityMobil2 aggressive 5-city field trials in dense urban & pedestrian environments next year !) | Slides
  • Maxime Flament, ERTICO, representing the European Commission | Slides also EU Report on necessary vehicle and infrastructure systems for Automated Driving
  • Yasuhiro Okumura, Japan’s Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism | Slides
  • Jan Becker, Bosch | Slides
  • Arne Bartels, Volkswagen | Slides (also his Testing, Licensing & Certification breakout session slides)
  • Bernard Soriano, California DMVSlides
  • Bryant Walker Smith, Stanford University School of LawSlides