Seminar: Stewart Worrall, Jathan Sadowski, and Martin Tomitsch, Sept 25th 2019

When: Weds, Sept 25th 2019, 1:00p

Where: Rose St Building Seminar Area

Title: Designing interactions between human and autonomous vehicles

Abstract: This presentation reports on a multidisciplinary, collaborative effort that investigates the complex problem of how humans can safely interact with autonomous vehicles. The ITS group at the Australian Centre for Field Robotics have been working towards developing small electric vehicles that can provide last mile transport in an urban environment. It became apparent that the technology behind this endeavour was missing an understanding of the human aspect of the task – how the vehicle can communicate its intention to the surrounding pedestrians such that the people outside the vehicle can understand and trust the behaviour of the vehicle, and how the vehicle can improve the safety and efficiency of the interaction. The expertise of the Design Lab and the Smart Urbanism Lab within the School of Architecture, Design and Planning has been crucial in incorporating people into the design process to understand how technology can be used to shape these interactions.

The presentation will introduce the project, but also the experiences of working in a multidisciplinary project with researchers from different backgrounds. With funding from CRIS/SIRIS, we have built a team of researchers and PhD students working in this area, and have generated joint publications and an ARC discovery proposal that is currently under review.

Bios: Dr Jathan Sadowski is a postdoctoral research fellow in smart cities in the School of Architecture, Planning, and Design at the University of Sydney. His research focuses on two broad areas: The process of making smart urbanism into a reality, from imagination to implementation. The political economy of designing and using data-driven, networked, and automated technology.

Associate Professor Martin Tomitsch is Chair of Design and Director of Innovation at the University of Sydney. His research focuses on the role of design for shaping the interactions between people and technology, and how digital technology and design processes can improve life in cities.

Dr Stewart Worrall is a research fellow in the intelligent transport systems (ITS) group of the Australian Centre for Field Robotics. His research is focused on enabling vehicle automation by understanding the complex interactions that occur in an urban road environment. This includes exploring challenges in localisation, obstacle detection/avoidance and path planning and prediction. He is also responsible for the operation of the groups autonomous electric vehicles.


Sydney Institute for Robotics and Intelligent Systems