0LAUK0 2015 01 Week3

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Week 3: 14-09-15

Meetings Monday

We presented our idea of "Autonomous Public Transport System Design Report". We did not convey a clear idea of what we were going to do the next couple of weeks at the presentation. To create a better understanding of what we were going to do the next weeks we sat together. Still we found that the topic and plan is too generic and decided to make it more specific. We choose to focus on the scheduling system as the core of Autonomous Public Transport System. Together we wrote our thoughts down and answered all the questions asked after our presentation.

Meetings Thursday

We did not yet receive feedback on our plan due to a mistake. We sent an email to the wrong lecturer. However we decided to continue with our project and hope our plan gets approved. Everyone worked on their part according to the planning. Furthermore we updated the wiki more and made plans on how to continuously update it with usefull information.


Before monday:

Eric: finish the survey so that we can start conducting next week.

Joey: Do literature study of past/current attempts.

Li: finish literature study of past attempts and make a summary of these attempts.

Lester: finish the User Aspect of the USE studies

Eric Steenhof: Study the economic impacts incase the busses become autonomous


Economic impacts autonomous bus

This chapter is of great importance for the bus scheduling system, for the case that the busses used in this system become autonomous. This will have great impact on different areas and USE-aspects. In this chapter the economic impacts will be discussed for the case that the busses become autonomous. First the positive impact will be explained and next the negative impacts.


1. “Honda Research & Development’s has gathered data that states that self-driving vehicles may reduce lost productivity incurred from traffic deaths and injuries” [1]. This results into a gain of $78 billion annually in the U.S. and $75 billion in Japan, based on 2013 data. The above statement rests on the fact that autonomous vehicles make less mistakes than vehicles driven by humans, this might also be the case for autonomous busses.

2. More jobs for lawyers and investigators. When using autonomous vehicles the question of who is responsible? is difficult question to answer. This means that in order to have a fair system a lot of lawyers and investigators have to be assigned to find answers to that question.

3. KPMG UK thinks that the annual economic benefit of autonomous vehicles will grow to 51 billion pounds by 2030 [2]. The reason for this grow is due to the fact that consumers will see how easy it is to travel. This will lead to economic benefits, for example improved productivity and increased trade [2]. The graph below shows the Economic benefits accelerated over time.

Figure 1: annual growth of autonomous vehicles calculated by the KPMG UK [2].

4. “Autonomous busses will lower the cost, resource consumption and ecological footprint of mobility. Because significantly lower costs will prompt many travelers to use buses on medium to long-distance trips instead of cars, these buses will increase the effective capacity of highways when measured in people-miles” [3].

5. Big saves for public transportation providers, due to no need of a driver. In the Boston area there around 5500 people driving busses, with a yearly salary of 29.000 dollar [5]. This results of saving of 159.500.00 dollars each year for the public transportation provider in Boston alone [5].

6. At drop in health care bills. Autonomous vehicles are claimed to be safer than human driving cars. This means less injuries and death due to traffic accidents. This results in a saving of billions of dollars in health care cost [6]. This means that the average household will have a benefit with health insurance.


1. The first positive impact also has a negative one hidden inside. “What happens when autonomous vehicles make mistakes? When crashes occur we might need an army of lawyers to tell us who is culpable [1]. And of course, autonomous vehicles need autonomous insurance policies to match”. This can destroy the current insurance market.

2. An autonomous bus transportation system will reduce the ‘need’ for a car. If from the simulations it is clear that the new public transportation system has a higher efficiency, this has great negative impact on the car industry. The decrease in cost and increase in time efficiency will alter the discussion of car users to buy another car. This means than less cars will be sold each year. Autonomous cars show the same effect. An autonomous car is able to pick up and deposit people without the need of a driver. That means that when two people have to go to different locations there is no need for two different cars [6]. The reduction in car sales will lead to job losses in the car industry. This will lead to higher unemployment.

3. The loss of jobs in the public transportation branch. In case the busses become autonomous the need for a driver will decrease over time [5]. This will result in an increase in unemployment. The bus drivers nowadays will have to find another profession; this might involve re-education [5]. This does not have to result in a negative impact, because the re-education might create new jobs. The re-education will favor newer employees over older employees, meaning older people will get penalized by the autonomous bus [5]. The next chapter will contain the threat of autonomous vehicles for public transportation.  

References: [1] http://www.usnews.com/opinion/economic-intelligence/2015/04/29/how-will-self-driving-cars-change-the-economy [2] https://www.kpmg.com/BR/en/Estudos_Analises/artigosepublicacoes/Documents/Industrias/Connected-Autonomous-Vehicles-Study.pdf [3] http://www.driverless-future.com/?cat=26 [4] https://higherlogicdownload.s3.amazonaws.com/AUVSI/c2a3ac12-b178-4f9c-a654-78576a33e081/UploadedImages/documents/pdfs/Posters/Macro%20Economics%20of%20Autonomous%20Vehicles%20Mudge%20poster.pdf [5] https://www.wpi.edu/Pubs/E-project/Available/E-project-043007-205701/unrestricted/IQPOVP06B1.pdf [6] http://www.wired.com/2015/03/the-economic-impact-of-autonomous-vehicles/