[AUDIO] Panel Discussion on Driverless (Autonomous) Cars: The Ethical, Legal, and Public Policy Implications

Wednesday, April 27, 2016 5:00 PM to 6:30 PM
Mercatus Center, Fourth Floor


The age of self-driving vehicles is quickly approaching. Semi-autonomous vehicles—those with such “assistive” features as auto-steer, auto-braking, and auto-lane change—have already been introduced to consumers, and several states have opened, or plan to open, their roads to testing of self-driving vehicles. For example, Virginia Governor Terry McAuliffe announced last June that more than 70 miles of roads in Northern Virginia—including Interstates 66, 495, and 95 and state routes 29 and 50—would be designated “Virginia Automated Corridors,” and be open for testing of autonomous vehicles. Several other states, and the District of Columbia, permit the operation of autonomous vehicles on public roads.

The introduction and use of this technology raises numerous ethical, legal, and policy considerations. Please join the Institute for Philosophy and Public Policy at GMU, the Mercatus Center at George Mason University, and the GMU Philosophy, Politics, and Economics Program for a panel discussion of these issues.

About the Speakers

Erik Angner
(Chair) is associate professor of philosophy, economics, and public policy at George Mason University, where he directs the undergraduate Philosophy, Politics, and Economics (PPE) Program. He is the author of two books – Hayek and Natural Law (2007) and A Course in Behavioral Economics (2012).

Jesse Kirkpatrick is the assistant director of the Institute for Philosophy and Public Policy at George Mason University. Prior to joining the Institute for Philosophy and Public Policy, he was an assistant professor at Radford University, and a resident postdoctoral fellow at the U.S. Naval Academy’s Stockdale Center for Ethical Leadership. His interests include the history of political theory, applied ethics, and the ethics of military technology.

Adam Thierer
is a senior research fellow with the Technology Policy Program at the Mercatus Center at George Mason University. He specializes in technology, media, Internet, and free-speech policies, with a particular focus on online safety and digital privacy. His latest book is Permissionless Innovation: The Continuing Case for Comprehensive Technological Freedom.

Tammy Trimble
is a senior research associate with the Virginia Tech Transportation Institute’s (VTTI’s) newly established Center for Public Policy, Partnerships, and Outreach. She has over thirteen years of experience facilitating and managing VTTI outreach and research projects, most recently working on projects related to connected vehicles and self-driving and automated vehicles.

Sponsored by Institute for Philosophy and Public Policy, Mercatus Center, and GMU Philosophy, Politics, and Economics Program.

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