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Young people reluctant to use driverless vehicles, says survey

by Australian Road Research Board on May 17, 2021

   If you think that young people are readily going to embrace driverless vehicles, think again.

   The latest Australia and New Zealand Driverless Vehicle Initiative (ADVI) Youth Survey, which asked Australian and New Zealand teenagers aged 13 to 15 years a series of questions about driverless vehicles, has found young people are reluctant to adopt driverless vehicles.

    The survey found teenagers surveyed held similar perceptions about driverless vehicles to those aged 25 years and over.

    Nearly half the teenagers surveyed (46%) said they would be somewhat or very unlikely to use driverless vehicles in the future compared with human-driven vehicles. A further one in five (19%) were undecided about driverless vehicles.

    It’s a similar finding for those 25 years and over, with 40% reluctant to use driverless vehicles.

    However, half the teenagers surveyed (51%) believe that driverless vehicles will be safer than those driven by people.  

   ADVI Executive Director Rita Excell said most of those surveyed had never had any experience with driverless vehicles.

     “The ADVI Youth Survey clearly shows that there’s a need to build trust in driverless technology, particularly among young people,” Ms Excell said.

     “We need to provide people of all ages the opportunity to experience the technology and become aware of the benefits.

     “This will further encourage community acceptance at all age levels and promote understanding of the lifestyle benefits of driverless vehicles and economic opportunities that come with the automated vehicle industry.

     “The fact most of those surveyed had not experienced driverless technology first-hand may have influenced the survey’s findings.”

     Instagram and traditional market research were used for the survey responses. Interestingly, the Instagram responses were more negative toward this technology than the participants recruited from traditional market researcher. Those who put together the survey expected, if there was any difference, social media users may be more open to technology and innovation, but the opposite seemed to be the case.

     The survey and report were prepared for ADVI by transport and road safety experts Dr Neeraj Saxena and Dr Anna Chevalier, from the Australian Road Research Board (ARRB).

       You can read the report in full here.

Topics: Research, Future Transport, Road Safety, Road and Transport Research, Driverless, Connected and Automated Vehicles, Autonomous