Leveraging state-of-the-art technologies, industry expertise and world-class academic research, the £5 million VENTURER research and development project investigated the barriers to the adoption of connected and autonomous vehicles (CAVs) in the UK. Enabled by its technical know-how and project trials, VENTURER has provided a clear picture of the challenges around public acceptance and behaviour, as well as the legal and insurance implications of increased vehicle autonomy. Based in Bristol and South Gloucestershire, VENTURER has also established the West of England as a centre of excellence for the safe user-led trialing of CAV technology, user behavioural response analysis, and social research.
In 2014, Innovate UK launched its first competition for collaborative research and development projects for driverless cars, to be part-funded by industry and Innovate UK. It is believed that driverless cars will unlock several potential benefits in everyday life, including:
VENTURER was successful in this competition and became the first of the Four Cities Trials to launch in July 2015. The project, led by Atkins, represented a rich partnership of universities, large and small businesses and local authorities, which aimed to investigate the barriers to the adoption of CAVs in the UK.
VENTURER supported the deployment of CAVs on UK roads by:
Having adopted a holistic approach to the integration of CAVs, the findings of VENTURER were used to identify recommendations for introducing CAVs in the UK. These recommendations included:
Drawing on state-of-the-art technologies, industry expertise and world-class academic research, VENTURER has established the West of England as a centre of excellence for the safe trialing of CAV technology, user behavioural response analysis, and social research. Moreover, VENTURER’s achievements and learnings are helping the government to fulfill its Industrial Strategy – particularly the ‘Future of Mobility’ Grand Challenge. Since VENTURER concluded in June 2018, the VENTURER Alliance has been created to continue the pioneering work of the innovative project.
The VENTURER Alliance offers proven expertise and a commitment to working with industry and government to take the next steps towards CAV implementation. To achieve this, the Alliance leverages the expertise and capabilities acquired during the project to offer customers a diverse portfolio of services. These services span numerous disciplines including technology, human factors, social research, legal and insurance.