DOI

10.17077/drivingassessment.1682

Location

Santa Fe, New Mexico, USA

Date

25-6-2019

Session

Session 3 - Poster Session A

Abstract

Advanced vehicle technologies promise improved road safety but may still be subjected to situations where choices have to be made regarding safety impact to other road users. There is debate about the principles that should guide the programming of choices into automation algorithms, and an acknowledgment that choices made by automation may be subject to more scrutiny than those by humans. To better understand the landscape of decisions that human drivers encounter, it is important to examine the rationale, calculus, and motivations behind such choices. While there are various methods to examine human decision making, doing so in an ecologically valid manner is challenging, especially in this context of driving. To that end, this study was conducted to examine if driving simulation could help understand drivers’ ethical choices. Participants drove a route in a driving simulator that was programmed to end in a crash situation, one that placed the driver in a position of choosing between two crash outcomes. Participants were asked, after the fact, about their perceptions of the simulation and their decisions. Results indicate that drivers generally accepted simulation as realistic, but their post-experiment choices did not align with their actual decisions during the drive. Findings may have implications for the experimental study of ethical behaviors.

Rights

Copyright © 2019 the author(s)

DC Citation

Proceedings of the Tenth International Driving Symposium on Human Factors in Driver Assessment, Training and Vehicle Design, 24-27 June 2019, Santa Fe, New Mexico. Iowa City, IA: Public Policy Center, of Iowa, 2019: 106-112.

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Jun 25th, 12:00 AM

Is Driving Simulation a Viable Method for Examining Drivers' Ethical Choices? An Exploratory Study

Santa Fe, New Mexico, USA

Advanced vehicle technologies promise improved road safety but may still be subjected to situations where choices have to be made regarding safety impact to other road users. There is debate about the principles that should guide the programming of choices into automation algorithms, and an acknowledgment that choices made by automation may be subject to more scrutiny than those by humans. To better understand the landscape of decisions that human drivers encounter, it is important to examine the rationale, calculus, and motivations behind such choices. While there are various methods to examine human decision making, doing so in an ecologically valid manner is challenging, especially in this context of driving. To that end, this study was conducted to examine if driving simulation could help understand drivers’ ethical choices. Participants drove a route in a driving simulator that was programmed to end in a crash situation, one that placed the driver in a position of choosing between two crash outcomes. Participants were asked, after the fact, about their perceptions of the simulation and their decisions. Results indicate that drivers generally accepted simulation as realistic, but their post-experiment choices did not align with their actual decisions during the drive. Findings may have implications for the experimental study of ethical behaviors.