The Centre for Unframed Thinking (CUT): Crossing disciplinary views on new research developments on autonomous vehicles
On the 28 and 29 November 2022, the Rennes School of Business Centre for Unframed Thinking hosted a series of conferences and discussions on the topic of cross-disciplinary views on new research developments on autonomous vehicles, co-organised with IMT Atlantique.
Centre for Unframed Thinking
Originally launched in March 2022, the Centre for Unframed Thinking is an initiative by Rennes School of Business and its partners to foster interdisciplinary research at the highest international level and to contribute to the global effort devoted to the analysis of the numerous complex issues raised by ongoing crises.
CUT is also the first business school-based Institute for Advanced Study (IAS) worldwide. It notably places ecology (and other life sciences), environmental and energy sciences and technology studies at the heart of its scientific programmes and welcomes practitioners and non-academics with strong relevant experience from around the world, coming from both private and public sectors and the socioeconomic spheres with particular expertise in their domains.
The Centre for Unframed Thinking is equally open to high-level independent intellectuals and cutting-edge artists working on issues that are compatible with its broad agenda.
Research developments on autonomous vehicles
On the 28 and 29 November 2022, and as part of its series of Conferences on Artificial Intelligence and Digitilization (CAID), a two-day event was organised by Raouf Boucekkine, Managing Director of CUT and Associate Dean for Research at Rennes School of Business and Jean-Marie Bonnin of IMT Atlantique, aided by the Rennes SB events team.
The main aim of this conference was to consider an interdisciplinary approach to the development of autonomous vehicles, considering the technological, legal, neuroscientific and philosophical aspects of this domain, allowing attendees to build up an articulated interdisciplinary knowledge in the field.
On the programme:
On 28 November, the conference began with the first of two talks on engineering developments in AV technologies from Zhengtao Ding of the University of Manchester and Arnaud de la Fortelle from HEEX Technologies & CAOR (Mines Paris), followed by the first of two conferences on the ethical, cognitive and legal aspects in AV technologies with Giulio Mecacci from Donders Institute for Brain, Cognition & Behaviour and Aurélie Dommes from Gustave Eiffel University in Paris.
On the second day, professors and researchers from different universities gathered to attend a session on the economics of AV technologies with speaker and senior fellow of CUT, Herbert Dawid of Bielefeld University in Germany, joined by discussants Juan Moreno Ternero of the University Paolo Olavide in Seville, also a CUT Senior fellow, and Annie Blandin from IMT Rennes.
Following this, Jean-Marie Bonnin of IMT Rennes hosted a second conference on engineering developments in AV technologies and Bahador Bahrami took the floor for the second session on ethical, cognitive and legal aspects in AV technologies, along with discussants Thibault Gajdos from CNRS-Aix-Marseille University, also a Senior fellow of CUT, and Giulio Mecacci from Donders Institute for Brain, Cognition & Behaviour.
This event truly reflects the will of the Centre for Unframed Thinking to work with its partners from around the world in order to concentrate on fostering cross-disciplinary research of the highest level.
Raouf Boucekkine, Managing Director of CUT and Associate Dean for Research
“The conference provided a broad overview of the latest developments in the highly multidisciplinary research on autonomous vehicles (AVs) in the world and outside the academic world. Indeed, AVs are not only a fascinating research object for engineers, economists, lawyers, psychologists, neuroscientists or philosophers, but they are also one of the hottest industrial and technological challenges of the last three decades. The conference, co-organised by the Rennes SB CUT and IMT Atlantique, addressed the most pressing issues related to both spheres of interest, concluding with a round table on the AV industry, moderated by Jean-Marie Bonnin (IMT Atlantique), covering the wide variety of sectors involved (industrial vehicles, transport, infrastructure, and drones).
Among many highly interesting topics on AVs, two were particularly addressed and discussed. The first is that of liability. Partially or totally relinquishing control of these vehicles suddenly raises the question of the responsibility of the human, the industrialist or…the robot (in the event of an accident in particular), with numerous legal, philosophical or economic implications that remain to be unravelled. This makes the progress of regulation in this field very difficult. The other decisive issue for the development of the AV industry is the necessary cooperation between AVs and between AVs and the road infrastructure (in particular, the issue of connectivity) as well as interactions with ordinary vehicles and vulnerable users (pedestrians, cyclists, etc.). Because of the mass of data generated, the level of reliability required and the risks in terms of cyber security, this permanent connectivity represents a real technological challenge, but offers many possibilities for interaction with the Smart City. It is this constructive perspective, associating VA with the Smart City framework, and in a broad vision of sustainable development, that the conference finally carried after two days of in-depth interdisciplinary discussions.”