Over 200 experts registered for the online live session on July 9, 2020.

On Thursday, July 9, we gathered once again virtually for our fourth Chapter Event, focusing on a pivotal topic for the future of autonomous mobility – AV regulations.  Over 200 worldwide experts from renowned companies and institutions joined the online conference to listen to multiple perspectives on attaining and certifying self-driving vehicles’ safety.

The Autonomous Chapter Event Safety & Regulation assembled a remarkable lineup of speakers representing the voices of reputed legal experts (PSWP), UNECE (The United Nations Economic Commission for Europe), U.S. National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), a world-class OEM (BMW Group), a leading technology provider (NVIDIA) as well as TÜV, a global leader in the field of testing, inspection, and system certification. We extend all gratitude and acknowledgments to:

  • Benedikt Wolfers (Partner & Founder of POSSER SPIETH WOLFERS & PARTNERS)
  • Richard Damm (President of the German Federal Motor Transport Authority (Kraftfahrt-Bundesamt) and Chair of the UNECE Working Party on Automated/Autonomous and Connected Vehicles (GRVA))
  • Jonathan Morrison (Chief Counsel at U.S. National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA))
  • Armin Graeter (Leader of Division Strategy Autonomous Driving, Driver Assistance at BMW)
  • Barnaby Simkin (Autonomous Driving Standards, NVIDIA)
  • Christian Gnandt (VP Automated Driving at TÜV SÜD)

This Chapter Event covered two main focus topics:



Throughout the panel discussions, the keynote speakers debated on essential areas of regulation and standardization, bringing multiple viewpoints to the forefront. The highlights of their discussions comprise the following:

  • For autonomous vehicle testing, simulation alone is not enough. It needs a combination of real-world testing, simulation, and data collection to cover a certain degree of cases. Therefore, collaboration on autonomous vehicle testing is crucial. However, global harmonization of autonomous vehicle testing will not be solved immediately due to the complexity of different national requirements as well as variations in the methodology of how autonomous driving technology providers test their autonomous vehicle components.
  • It is foreseen that national guidelines will be developed first due to the difficulty in aligning all parties on the international level. Hence international bodies like UNECE should guide national requirements and infrastructure for autonomous vehicles to allow their consolidation on the international level in the future. One way for UNECE to promote harmonized international rules and standards is by picking up concepts discussed in WP.29 (UNECE World Forum for Harmonization of Vehicle Regulations), implementing them into national law, gaining experience in practice and reacting back to WP.29.
  • When it comes to answering the question “How safe an autonomous vehicle should be?” the speakers agreed that the vehicle should be safer than a human driver. Nevertheless, they had differing views when it came to the definition of “To what type of driver should the Autonomous Vehicle be compared to?”.
    • Should it be an average human driver – that is often distracted and tired relatively faster?
    • Should it be a professional driver? The problem with expert drivers is that they are confident and take more risks.
    • In conclusion, there is one gap to be filled: agreeing on a common characteristic of a human driver to which the automated vehicle should be compared to.

In conclusion, there is one gap to be filled: agreeing on a common characteristic of a human driver to which the automated vehicle should be compared to.

As with the previous three Chapter Events, each presentation was followed by a live Q&A session via Slido, tailored to the online participants’ main interests. Thus, the attendees had the opportunity to further discuss certain topics and interact with the keynote speakers.

The real-time engagement and live panel discussions provided the participants with insightful, first-hand information. What is more, The Autonomous Chapter Event was the perfect setting for our co-host, PSWP to disclose Germany’s fresh draft (May 2020) on the SAE-Level 4 vehicles AV law.

We are currently gathering feedback from all our participants and summarizing the valuable input of this Chapter Event on Safety & Regulation, which will be included in The Autonomous Report.

If you are interested in contributing to our work towards Global Reference Solutions in safe autonomous mobility, please get in touch with us!

And don’t forget, Early-Bird Tickets for The Autonomous Main Event are now available! Click here to grab yours!

By Iulia Juchert

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