The conference focusses on the significant progress made in developing automated road transport technologies, such as advanced vehicle control, vehicle localisation systems, data processing, artificial intelligence or user interfaces, fostered by Horizon 2020, the EU research and innovation programme.
Carlos Moedas, Commissioner for Research, Science and Innovation, said:
Automated road transport is such a fast-moving and important area that it requires a coordinated and a collaborative approach within and between the public and the private sphere. A vast range of sectors, from the automotive industry and road infrastructure to IT and telecoms, have a role to play in exploring this new frontier. That's why this first European event is so important.
Earlier this month, at the Digital Day in Rome on 23 March 2017, 29 European countries signed a Letter of Intent to further intensify their cooperation on cross-border testing of automated road transport. Such cross-border tests will notably build on pilot projects funded under Horizon 2020.
At this occassion, Andrus Ansip, Vice-President for the Digital Single Market, and Günther H. Oettinger , Commissioner for Human Resources and Budget, both said:
Mobility has to work across borders. Almost all Member States agreed to work together on tests on the ground. It is a great success. Cooperation will focus on interoperability, data access and liability, as well as future 5G connectivity. The European Commission will facilitate this process and will continue to work with all Member States and interested parties on this matter.
It is now crucial that European Union provides the right legal and regulatory framework, innovation-friendly conditions and support to research projects as well as large-scale trials, including through Horizon 2020.
The EU's active involvement is essential to overcome the many challenges, such as safety issues, public acceptance, cyber-security, use of data, privacy, liability and ethical issues, that have to be dealt with before highly automated driving systems become widely available on the market.
You can watch the live broadcasting of the conference.
The Commission supports the development of an EU framework for connected and automated driving to provide users with a wide portfolio of mobility services; to strengthen the competitiveness of the EU industry and to increase sustainability without curbing mobility.
This framework encompasses policy as well as regulatory and public support actions for the development and deployment of these innovative technologies. The Commission supports both research and development as well as large scale trials of automated vehicles. Horizon 2020, the EU research and innovation funding programme, has dedicated calls on automated road transport and the Internet of Things.
In April 2016, EU transport ministers outlined the steps necessary for the development of self-driving technology in the Amsterdam Declaration. In line with the declaration, the Commission has proposed to work towards a coherent European framework for the deployment of interoperable connected and automated driving.
The Mobility Package and its Strategic Transport Research and Innovation Agenda (STRIA), include a roadmap on connected and automated transport to steer and coordinate European research and innovation activities and policies in the longer term.
Read more details on the the conference.