Autonomous Vehicles

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  • Autonomous vehicles on a highway, photo by Wenjie Dong/Getty Images

    Commentary

    Ensuring Cybersecurity Is Vital for a Driverless Future

    Feb 12, 2018

    High-profile accidents involving autonomous vehicles (AVs) have led to recent discussions about the physical safety of people. However, it could be argued that consumers and manufacturers should be equally, if not more, concerned about the potential cybersecurity vulnerabilities in AVs.

  • A self-driving car being developed by nuTonomy, photo by Brian Snyder/REUTERS

    Article

    Why Waiting for Perfect Autonomous Vehicles May Cost Lives

    Nov 7, 2017

    Some people think autonomous vehicles must be flawless before humans take their hands off the wheel. But putting AVs on the road before they're perfect improves the technology more quickly—and could save hundreds of thousands of lives over time.

Explore Autonomous Vehicles

  • Multimedia

    Challenges and Approaches to Realizing Autonomous Vehicle Safety

    An overview of testimony by Nidhi Kalra submitted to the House Energy and Commerce Committee, Subcommittee on Digital Commerce and Consumer Protection on February 14, 2017.

    Feb 14, 2017

  • A highway at night under a starry sky

    Infographic

    Don't Rely on Test-Driving Alone to Assess Autonomous Vehicle Safety

    Americans drive three trillion miles a year, causing one death every 100 million miles. To prove that autonomous vehicles are safer than humans, they would have to be test-driven astronomical distances. Regulators should pursue other ways of reducing uncertainty about AV safety.

    Jan 9, 2017

  • A prototype of Google's self-driving vehicle is seen in Mountain View, California, September 29, 2015

    Testimony

    Shaping the Future of Autonomous Vehicles

    More than 90 percent of car crashes are caused by human errors. Will self-driving vehicles help mitigate this risk? To answer this question, experts must address how safety is measured and determine the threshold of safety required before autonomous vehicles are on the roads.

    Nov 16, 2016

  • Nidhi Kalra and Timothy Bonds at RAND's Politics Aside event in Santa Monica, November 12, 2016

    Q&A

    Autonomous Vehicles: Imagining the Day-to-Day of the Future

    At RAND's 2016 Politics Aside event, Nidhi Kalra and Timothy Bonds discuss what daily life might be like once autonomous vehicles populate the roads.

    Nov 14, 2016

  • Multimedia

    Politics Aside 2016 Audio Podcasts

    Listen to audio from RAND's Politics Aside 2016 event. Panelists discuss new technology and the price of personalized health care, autonomous vehicles, and the use of data in baseball.

    Nov 12, 2016

  • A fleet of Uber's Ford Fusion self-driving cars are shown during a demonstration in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, September 13, 2016

    Commentary

    Driving to Safety: Autonomous Vehicle Questions, Answered

    A recent RAND report found that test-driving autonomous vehicles is not a feasible way to determine when they will be safe enough for consumer use. This resulted in a lot of questions.

    Oct 25, 2016

  • Dmitri Dolgov, principal engineer on the software team of Google's Self-Driving Car project, speaks during a presentation in Mountain View, California, September 29, 2015

    Commentary

    The Brains Behind Autonomous Vehicles May Need a License to Drive

    Autonomous vehicles require exquisite software. To make this software secure, industry and government should consider educational standards and licensure requirements for the engineers who create it.

    Sep 27, 2016

  • A fleet of Uber's Ford Fusion self-driving cars are shown during a demonstration in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, September 13, 2016

    Commentary

    When Will We Know Self-Driving Cars Are Safe?

    Will autonomous vehicles be safe before they are allowed on the road for consumer use? Maybe. And that might be the best that can be said.

    Sep 25, 2016

  • U.S. Capitol Building, Washington, D.C.

    Blog

    A Summer Reading List for Congress

    To help Hill staffers make the most of the Congressional recess, RAND has developed a list of must-read research and commentaries that will help ensure policymakers will return ready to hit the ground running.

    Aug 2, 2016

  • A Tesla Model S with version 7.0 software update containing Autopilot features is seen during a Tesla event in Palo Alto, California, October 14, 2015

    Commentary

    Tesla Fatal Crash Reminds That Human Interface Remains Important

    The first reported fatality in a self-driving vehicle is a chilling reminder that the evolving relationship with increasingly robotic motor vehicles needs to be a partnership, an undertaking with humans and machines managing the risks.

    Jul 30, 2016

  • The interior of a Tesla Model S is shown in autopilot mode in San Francisco, California, April 7, 2016

    Commentary

    Fatal Crash Shouldn't Kill Self-Driving Cars

    The first known fatality in an autonomous vehicle occurred on May 7 and raises important questions. It does not, however, mean that self-driving cars are less safe than human drivers or that development of the technology should be stopped.

    Jul 16, 2016

  • Double decker bus going by Big Ben and Parliament in London, UK

    Commentary

    Looking Out the Window to Transport in 2035

    The UK's roads, railways, and airports are some of the most congested in the world. Exploring future transport scenarios and the technologies that will drive them can help guide today's policy and investment decisions.

    Jun 27, 2016

  • Periodical

    RAND Review: July-August 2016

    This issue highlights the stress of military deployments and resilience of military families; RAND research on cybercrime, network defense, and data breaches; the 40th anniversary of RAND's landmark Health Insurance Experiment; and more.

    Jun 27, 2016

  • Red bus passing over Westminster bridge with Big Ben in the background, London, UK

    Report

    Travel in Britain in 2035

    Without substantial investment, the UK will experience severe congestion across its transport infrastructure by 2035. How might emerging technologies be able to address the problem?

    Jun 24, 2016

  • Research Brief

    Travel in Britain in 2035: Future scenarios and their implications for technology

    By 2035 UK transport infrastructure may be severely congested. Innovate UK commissioned this study to explore how technology might address the congestion problem by using capacity more efficiently, supporting modal choice and managing travel demand.

    Jun 24, 2016

  • Gill Pratt, CEO of Toyota Research Institute, talks about developing autonomous cars during the 2016 CES trade show in Las Vegas, Nevada, January 5, 2016

    Commentary

    Why It's Nearly Impossible to Prove Self-Driving Cars' Safety Without a New Approach

    There are arguments to be made for permitting driverless cars in some capacity even if they are not quite as safe as human drivers, because doing so may enable developers to improve them faster, and thus save more lives overall.

    May 12, 2016

  • The computer screen in an autonomous prototype Continental Chrysler 300C sedan at an event featuring numerous self-driving cars on Capitol Hill, March 15, 2016

    Report

    Test-Driving Alone Cannot Demonstrate the Safety of Autonomous Vehicles

    In order to advance autonomous vehicles into daily use, alternative testing methods must be developed to supplement on-the-road testing. Alternative methods might include accelerated testing, virtual testing and simulators, mathematical modeling, scenario testing, and pilot studies.

    Apr 12, 2016

  • News Release

    Autonomous Vehicles Cannot Be Test-Driven Enough Miles to Demonstrate Their Safety; Alternative Testing Methods Needed

    Under even the most-aggressive test driving assumptions, it would take existing fleets of autonomous vehicles tens and even hundreds of years to log sufficient miles to adequately assess the safety of the vehicles when compared to human-driven vehicles.

    Apr 12, 2016

  • A self-driving vehicle travels on the road during a demonstration in Singapore, October 12, 2015

    Commentary

    The Police Could Be Controlling Your Self-Driving Car

    As self-driving cars become widespread, one of the biggest issues will be the rules under which public infrastructures and public safety officers may be empowered to override how autonomous vehicles are controlled.

    Apr 4, 2016

  • Advertisement from 1957 for "America's Independent Electric Light and Power Companies" showing an autonomous car

    Report

    Self-Driving Vehicles Offer Potential Benefits, Policy Challenges for Lawmakers

    Self-driving vehicles offer the promise of significant benefits to society, but raise several policy challenges, including the need to update insurance liability regulations and privacy concerns such as who will control the data generated by this technology.

    Mar 22, 2016