CSCRS to share principles of Safe Systems, systems science at TRB

CSCRS researchers will continue efforts to explore and explain Safe Systems and systems science principles, methods, and practices at the Transportation Research Board 98th Annual Meeting, Jan. 13 – 17, 2019, in Washington, D.C. Going to TRB? Attend these sessions to learn more:

In addition to systems-focused sessions, CSCRS researchers will present on specific CSCRS research projects and related topics, including:

Also, CSCRS will hold a Safety Sunday @ TRB networking reception on Sunday, Jan. 13, in conjunction with the TRB Annual Meeting. The event will be similar to the inaugural Safety Sunday @ TRB event held in January 2018. More details to come.

Safe Systems Summit rescheduled for April 23-24, 2019

The Safe Systems Summit has been rescheduled for Apr. 23-24, 2019, in Durham, NC. The event was postponed due to Hurricane Florence, which made landfall in North Carolina at the same time that the original conference date was scheduled. The rescheduled event will feature most of the original program speakers and offer new opportunities for engagement. Stay tuned for updated information on registration, hotels, and other details.

CSCRS welcomes new advisory board members

CSCRS welcomed five new individuals to its Advisory Board this year:

  • Nadia Anderson, Manager, Public Policy, Road and Traffic Safety, Uber
  • Jason Gainey, Manager, Passive Safety and Accident Research, Volkswagen Group of America
  • King Gee, Director of Engineering and Technical Services, American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials
  • Jacqueline Gillan, President Emeritus, Advocates for Highway and Auto Safety
  • Dan Magri, Deputy Assistant Secretary, Office of Planning, Louisiana Department of Transportation & Development

CSCRS is pleased to add their unique perspectives to strengthen this board, which helps direct and guide CSCRS research and tech transfer activities. Two members left the Board this year: Chuck Gulash, who retired from Toyota in August, and Heather Rothenberg, who left Uber for another position. See the entire Board roster here.

Systems spotlight: Webinar on connecting Safe Systems to Vision Zero presented by CSCRS researchers

CSCRS Associate Director Eric Dumbaugh, Florida Atlantic University, and CSCRS researcher Seth LaJeunesse, UNC Highway Safety Research Center Research Associate, presented during the Aug. 24, 2018, Vision Zero Network webinar “Safe Systems: What Does it Mean for Vision Zero?” To view the archived webinar and read a summary, visit here.

Songpo Li

Collaborator profile: Songpo Li

We are pleased to feature CSCRS Associate Director Songpo Li in this issue’s Collaborator Profile. Li is a postdoctoral associate at Duke University’s Humans and Autonomy Lab.

Crossroads: How did you get involved in road safety research?

Li: I have been working on human-robot interaction research for eight years, and I plan to incorporate autonomous vehicle research soon. I believe my HRI research experience with semi-autonomous robotics will be very helpful for answering safety-related problems, such as how autonomous vehicles should interact with other autonomous vehicles, human-driven vehicles, pedestrians, and animals (pets or wild animals).

Crossroads: Why do you believe it is important to create a new approach to researching road safety?

Li: With rapidly growing technologies and techniques, we can now research road safety on a much larger and deeper scale than any time before. New approaches are in great need, for example, to collect and analyze extensive data to achieve clear insights on what has happened on the road and why.

Crossroads: What does a systems approach to road safety mean to you?

Li: Whether one can safely drive home from work could be affected by thousands or even millions of factors. To me, the systems approach means we need to comprehensively analyze the problems in road safety by including all factors in the analysis.

Crossroads: What can your discipline bring to road safety research?

Li: My research of regulating semi-autonomous robots’ behaviors with consideration of human factors can be adapted into road safety research to regulate the behaviors of autonomous vehicles.

Crossroads: Where would you like to see the field of transportation safety in five years?

Li: In five years, I would like to see more road monitoring devices installed on roads and in cars. Data generated by these devices could be organized and made easily accessible to general researchers.

Crossroads: What’s the most rewarding thing that’s happened during your research career?

Li: When my ideas turned into funded projects to allow me and my colleagues to really study the problems and validate our conjectures.

Crossroads: What advice would you give to up-and-coming researchers in your field?

Li: Always be willing to listen and learn from others.

CSCRS highlights

UCB and UNC announce new CSCRS student scholars

UCB and the UNC Department of City & Regional Planning are continuing programs to recognize and engage graduate students in road safety research:

Learn more about CSCRS student engagement here.

UCB releases first videos as part of its CSCRS Road Safety Video Series

UCB’s Safe Transportation Research & Education Center has introduced the first two videos created as part of its CSCRS Road Safety Video Series:

The goal of this program is to produce short educational videos about road safety that highlight the research conducted by CSCRS scholars and researchers at UCB. They are targeted to the general public and practitioners.

UNC continues Coffee & Conversation series with focus on automated vehicles

In September 2018, UNC launched Coffee and Conversation 2.0: Autonomous Vehicles and Road Safety, a speaker series that aims to answer the question “what will become of the world when autonomous vehicles rule the road?” It is the continuation of the original Coffee & Conversation series that launched in January 2018. To see the latest schedule and view proceedings, visit here.

Duke video shows vehicle-to-pedestrian safety experiment

Duke’s HAL Lab created a video showing an experiment using a safety app intended to alert pedestrians when they are near areas of high traffic density. The app is the focus of the CSCRS research project “Development and Evaluation of Vehicle to Pedestrian (V2P) Safety Interventions” by CSCRS researcher Missy Cummings. View the video here.

CSCRS book shelf

“Door to Door: The Magnificent, Maddening, Mysterious World of Transportation,” Edward Humes, Harper Perennial
By M. Clay

M. Clay is a Graduate Student Research Assistant at the UNC Highway Safety Research Center, where she supports the work of the CSCRS. She is pursuing her master’s degree in City and Regional Planning at UNC-Chapel Hill, with a focus on freight transportation. Previously she was Deputy Editor of the digital newsroom at the Chicago Tribune. CSCRS asked her what she was reading:

Pulitzer Prize winning journalist Edward Humes unveils the hidden costs of safety, transportation, economy, and time underlying the demand for goods at a click. Humes outlines the contemporary history of globalization, especially the shipping container, and then launches into discussion of how infrastructure concepts must change with technology. The central theme, according to Humes: “The idea that goods and people can be considered separately from one another when it comes to building roads…is one of our primary transportation obstacles and myths.”


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