i-DREAMS dreams of Zero: POLIS publishes second road safety brief

The second policy brief of the i-DREAMS project, authored by POLIS' Pedro Homem de Gouveia, has been published at the end of September 2022.

The brief, titled 'I dream of Zero', focuses on the fact that a number of public entities, ranging from local and regional governments to the European Union (EU), are committed to ambitious road safety targets. While the EU aims to reduce mortality by half by the end of this decade, several cities have already attained zero: Vision Zero, a new paradigm, is driving this shift.

More precisely, this brief discusses how i-DREAMS may provide a critical practical answer to help those authorities begin leading by example right now and enable corporate fleet owners to advance their corporate social responsibility through real measures.

I dream of Zero: Enabling public fleets to lead by example – right now

The brief addresses the true challenge of road safety and how changes to two of its key structural factors, infrastructure (streets and roads) and the motorised vehicles that roll on it (cars, buses, trucks, and so on), can strongly and systematically influence and thus change the behaviour of all individuals driving those vehicles. This requires dealing with risk at its source.

Motor vehicles provide the greatest risk to all road users because of their faster speed, larger mass, and stronger structure. As a result, any effective road safety policy must recognise this and prioritise risk reduction at the source.

The notion that road safety policy and practice must address the '3 Es' (engineering, enforcement, and education) has been around for a long time and continues to be relevant. It is critical, however, to recognise that these '3 Es' are not choices. They must go forward together to strengthen one another. Indeed, if the roads and automobiles continue to encourage unsafe behaviour, enforcement and education will be ineffective.

Betting on public fleets

Changing traffic behaviour is a lengthy process that involves both strategy and leadership. Changing the infrastructure is not enough for local and regional governments to set the tone for others' behaviour; they must also set an example. A vital asset is sometimes overlooked: public fleets.

Several examples demonstrate that proactive retrofitting of public fleets with Advanced Driver Assistance Systems (ADAS) is feasible and worthwhile.

i-DREAMS created a solution based on strong scientific data, cutting-edge technology, and thorough field testing on automobiles, buses, and trucks — a simple solution for improving cars, drivers, and fleet administration that can be retrofitted into current fleets. Moreover, the i-DREAMS solution is what municipal and regional governments require to set a good example with their fleets — a powerful commercial product.

Both the i-DREAMS software and hardware have been rigorously and effectively field-tested, with the success of these field testing prompting participating organisations (and others) to seek long-term collaboration to immediately upgrade their fleets.

Got questions about the brief?

Contact Pedro Homem de Gouveia to ask anything about 'I dream of Zero'.