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Conference - The Future of Automotive Safety

March 20, 2018 - 9:15am

UMTRI Automotive Futures Group

Focus on the Future
Automotive Research Conferences


The Future of Automotive Safety


April 4, 2018

9am to 1:30pm

North Campus Research Complex, 2800 Plymouth Rd. Bldg. 18, Ann Arbor, MI 48109

When we looked at the future of automotive safety in 2014, many of the speakers were talking about technologies for connected and autonomous vehicles that were either non-existent or in their early development phases.  As we look at the automotive safety landscape we see many of the challenges mentioned still in play (e.g. sensor fusion and cybersecurity), but we also see much research that really dives into understanding the details of future connected and autonomous vehicle technologies and the safety benefits that they will bring.


This conference on the future of automotive safety looks at many of the detailed research projects that are taking place at the UM Transportation Research Institute, and how they fit into the future of auto safety.  Projects range from the implementation of a connected vehicle program with nearly 2,000 vehicles sending data to test the functionality of the system, and the co-development of the MCity test facility used by numerous companies to test autonomous and connected vehicles, to using Big Data to estimate the benefits of multiple safety technologies on a vehicle and how autonomous vehicles “learn” from their experience.


This conference will also highlight the views of the future of automotive safety of UMTRI’s director who has spent decades studying auto safety as well as co-developing MCity.  He has the advantage of access to all the main areas of research concerning future safety technology, so his views on the future will be based on a thorough understanding of the strengths and weaknesses of current technologies and those still in development.


Questions to be addressed include:  How far along is the industry in its understanding of all the required parameters of advanced safety technologies?  What are the main areas of research currently in play?  What still needs to be researched?  Are we any closer to understanding cybersecurity challenges and how to meet them?   What are some of the areas of safety research that still need to be addressed?  What timeframe should we expect for the introduction of the different safety technologies?  How is government responding to the introduction of the new technologies?  


Confirmed speakers include:

Bruce Belzowski, Managing Director, Automotive Futures Group, UM Transportation Research Institute will moderate the conference.

Jim Sayer, Director, UM Transportation Research Institute will provide his insight into the future of automotive safety, based on his decades of auto safety research experience.

Dave LeBlanc, Head of UMTRI’s Engineering Systems Group, will discuss his research that focuses on how to measure the benefits of the new safety technologies using field tests.

Carol Flanagan, Head of UMTRI’s Center for the Management of Information for Safe and Sustainable Transportation (CMISST) will talk about the promise, progress, and pitfalls in Big Data analyses of safety data. 

Lindsay Ryan, Assistant Research Scientist, Institute for Social Research, University of Michigan will discuss her recent research on measuring the “trust” drivers have in autonomous vehicles.

Other researchers, manufacturers, suppliers, government representatives, and consultants have been invited

Conference Sponsorship


Companies or groups interested in sponsoring this conference, please contact Bruce Belzowski at or 734-936-2704. Sponsorship Amount (Minimum $2,500)


Future of Automotive Safety Conference Sponsors


Aisin Technical Center of America

Argonne National Labs

BorgWarner Inc.

Bosch Corporation

Delphi Corporation

Denso Corporation

Ford Motor Company

Valeo North America, Inc.

University of Michigan Transportation Research Institute



Conference Registration

New Conference Option: Our new system allows our foreign and local participants unable to attend the conference but who are interested in viewing the presentations to pay the registration fee for the conference, and they will receive an email when the presentations are online for viewing.


UMTRI-Automotive Futures Affiliates and UM Students, Faculty, and Staff have two FREE options:

Option 1: UMTRI-Automotive Futures Affiliates and UM Students, Faculty, and Staff who will NOT ATTEND, but would like to receive a link to the presentations:  Free

Option 2: UMTRI-Automotive Futures Affiliates and UM Students, Faculty, and Staff who will ATTEND the conference:  Free

For all others: $200

Register at: The Future of Automotive Safety


Research Group: