Lights, Camera, Autonomy! Exploring the Opinions of Older Adults Regarding Autonomous Vehicles Through Enactment
Autonomous vehicles (AV), one of the transportation industry’s biggest innovations of the past few decades, bring the promise of safer roads and significantly lower vehicle-related fatalities.
While many studies have found largely positive consumer opinions regarding operating and owning such a vehicle, older adults (55+) tend to express concerns about the safety and operational risks of a vehicle with unknown capabilities. To investigate how older adults and AVs may interact, we conducted an improv- style enactment-based participatory design pilot study. We found that initial concerns about trust and safety can be diminished through training and repetitive successful vehicle operation. Additionally, our participants provided insights into the AV design considerations, needs, and interactions for older adults.
These findings add to the collective body of autonomous vehicle research by demonstrating that the needs of this growing population, who may benefit significantly from access to AVs, should be considered by manufacturers.
Huff Jr., E