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Supporting the interaction of Humans and Automated vehicles: Preparing for the EnvIronment of Tomorrow

Project description

Paving a pedestrian-safe way for self-driving cars

Walking is great for our health and the environment, but it can be dangerous. In Europe, nearly a quarter (21 %) of all fatally injured road users are pedestrians. In cities, it is almost a third. While measures to improve vehicle and road user safety as well as transport infrastructure (like intersections and crosswalks) is underway, experts are already planning for when autonomous vehicles (AVs) hit Europe’s tricky-to-navigate city roads. The EU-funded Shape-IT project aims to facilitate the safe integration of AVs into tomorrow’s mixed urban traffic environments, using both existing and new research methods. It will design advanced interfaces and control strategies and integrate knowledge on human/AV interactions into models to perform safety assessments.


The overall goal of this ETN is to enable rapid and reliable development of safe and user-centred automated vehicles (AVs) for urban environments.Vehicle automation has been identified as a game-changer in transport, promising substantial reductions in road-traffic fatalities while improving mobility. However, the processes to integrate automation in transport have been primarily technology-focussed, with insufficient consideration given to how users both inside and outside of the AVs will interact with AVs.
The main objective of SHAPE-IT is to facilitate the safe, acceptable (and, ideally, desirable) integration of user-centred and transparent AVs into tomorrow’s mixed urban traffic environments, using both existing and new research methods, designing advanced interfaces and control strategies.To realize the objective, the research in this project spans three complementary facets of AV/human factors research: a) understanding the behaviour of different road-users (inside and outside AVs) when interacting with AVs, investigating cognitive processes, predictability, trust, acceptance and safe interaction in initial and long-term AV exposure, b) researching the best design strategies for interfaces used for communication and interaction between AVs and humans (inside and outside AVs), and c) integrating knowledge on human/AV interactions into models to perform prospective mixed traffic AV safety assessments. As AI is a core technology for AV development, this ETN will also seek to integrate knowledge of human factors with that of AI in AV development, reducing the gap between human-factors and AI scientists and AV software developers.The main educational aim of this ETN is to deliver a future generation of human factors researchers with an excellent multidisciplinary (cognitive and behavioural psychology, human-factors, computer science, and engineering) education in human factors experimental and modelling methods, human-AV interaction, safety analysis and AV design.


Net EU contribution
€ 563 965,92

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Södra Sverige Västsverige Västra Götalands län
Activity type
Higher or Secondary Education Establishments
Total cost
€ 563 965,92

Participants (5)