The politics of autonomous vehicles

Research workshop
16-17 December 2019, University College London

On 16-17 December 2019, the ESRC Driverless Futures? project is holding a workshop to bring together a small number of the most interesting social researchers looking at the politics of ‘autonomous vehicles’.

Despite the terminology, social scientists know that these technologies will be far from autonomous. They will be shaped by human interests and expectations, and future sociotechnical systems will be entangled in social worlds (infrastructures, rules, norms, behaviours, institutions and more) in complex and possibly unpredictable ways.  

Our aim with this workshop is to bring new research and thinking to our understanding of likely, desirable or undesirable futures involving self-driving vehicles and think about the social pathways towards them. The workshop is invitation-only, with the aim of producing a journal special issue.

Confirmed speakers: 

  • Marina Jirotka, Professor of Human Centred Computing, University of Oxford 
  • Peter Norton, Associate Professor of History, Department of Engineering and Society, University of Virginia 
  • Milos Mladenovic, Assistant Professor, Transportation Engineering, Aalto University 

This event will take place in central London, with an exact location to be confirmed. 

Co-organisers: Jack Stilgoe and Tom Cohen, University College London 

Background reading from the Driverless Futures? project 

Cohen, T., Stilgoe, J. and Cavoli, C. (2018) Reframing the governance of automotive automation: insights from UK stakeholder workshops, Journal of Responsible Innovation 

Stilgoe, J. (2018). Machine learning, social learning and the governance of self-driving carsSocial studies of science48(1), 25-56. 

Stilgoe, J. (2018) Seeing like a Tesla – How can we anticipate self-driving worlds?Glocalism, issue 3 

Winfield, A., & Jirotka, M. (2018). Ethical governance is essential to building trust in robotics and AI systemsPhilosophical Transactions A: Mathematical, Physical and Engineering Sciences