Road transport and the automotive industry are changing rapidly. The pace from innovation to societal benefit needs however to increase if we are to succeed in switching to a sustainable transport system - it is the planet itself that have set the deadline. Therefore, FFI has updated its research and innovation program to contribute even better to the needs of the automotive industry and the society.
Today, FFI invited to a conference in Stockholm to discuss the society's transition to a sustainable transport system, and the most important measures required to accelerate this work.
New actors, Agenda 2030 and a more agile process in focus
“FFI is an important funder for our traffic safety research, and about half of the projects in our portfolio receive their funding from FFI, says Malin Levin, deputy director at SAFER, who was on site in Stockholm to learn about the news in the program.
The main news of the research and innovation program presented at the conference was in brief:
- Agenda 2030: The global sustainability challenge will guide the research; the projects will contribute to our common sustainability goals to an even greater extent than previously.
- Wider base of actors: The program will even better enable new actors to contribute.
- Societal benefits: The projects' opportunity for societal benefits and utilization will be given greater consideration in the evaluation.
- More and improved communication: The program will contribute to stronger and more efficient knowledge dissemination.
- Updated roadmaps: Each sub-program now has its own roadmap that will be updated regularly (approximately once per year was mentioned).
- Implementation of a more agile approach, clarity and more effective goal management were also mentioned as important improvements in the program.
- New vision in place: Sweden leads the global transition to sustainable road transport.
- New mission: FFI drives road transport innovations for a sustainable society.
- The research focus will still be deep, but is now also broadening towards implementation.
- Five new sub-programs, several relevant to road safety research.
Five new sub-programs
The updated program, that will help to create a transport system that accelerates the transition to a sustainable society, includes five new sub-areas:
• Traffic-safe automation
• Zero emissions
• Transport and mobility services
• Accelerate (focus on relevant, scalable demo projects with high potential)
The submission deadline for the first call is June 21 (Accelerera is not yet open).
“I see that SAFER's research agenda can contribute to several of the new sub-programs; several of our research questions naturally come into the sub-program for traffic-safe automation, but there is also great potential for us to collaborate with relevant actors also within the sub program for zero emissions, as several of the forms of mobility we research are of this nature. The safety aspects in the sub-area transport and mobility services will also likely be important to us", Malin tells.
The subprogram Traffic safe automation
The purpose of this sub-program is to support research and development activities that contribute to increasing road safety and making transport more sustainable through safe connected automated vehicles, prepared for shared use. The projects will also contribute to strengthening the competitiveness of Swedish industry. FFI finances projects that affect one or more of the sub-program's focus areas:
- Safe automated vehicles
- Safety for road users inside and outside the vehicle
- Integration of vehicles and infrastructure for safe transport solutions
- Enabling methods and techniques with clear application for development and commissioning of safe automation
For complete information about the program's content, please refer to FFI's roadmap.
FFI invites research organisations, companies, public and non-profit organisations which address any of the above areas and which intends to develop new solutions and methods.
“The meeting was very inspiring! SAFER is well-positioned to take advantage of the new aspects in the program. We have such broad expertise in our partnership and a multidisciplinary research platform with relevant actors, who have the sustainability high on the agenda, already in place, Malin concludes.
SAFER will arrange a seminar for the partners together with FFI to enable that more people can take part in the updated program, to ask questions and discuss opportunities. More information about this event will be distributed shortly.