On the Horizon: The Future of Autonomous Vehicles
October 5, 2021
This educational program is proudly presented as part of the Travelers Institute’s Insuring Autonomy® initiative which outlines how auto insurance will lead through changing risks and offers recommendations for critical insurance-related components of AV regulation.
October 5, 2021 | Webinar
Driverless ride-hailing programs, truck platoons, and autonomous personal and delivery vehicles – the future of our roads will undoubtedly look different. The Travelers Institute and Travelers Canada, in partnership with 10 Canadian broker associations, hosted nearly 1,000 live guests for an in-depth look at autonomous vehicles (AVs) across Canada. Ontario Associate Transportation Minister Stan Cho kicked off the session, followed by a panel discussion including speakers representing government and industry. Panelists addressed the latest in AV technology and commercialization, how AVs may impact roadway safety, and the future of auto liability and insurance.
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Text, On the Horizon: The Future of Autonomous Vehicles. Travelers Institute. Travelers. IBANS- Insurance Brokers of Nova Scotia, ibaa - Insurance Brokers Association of Alberta, Insurance Brokers Association of Canada, C I P Society, i b a o - Insurance Brokers of Ontario, Insurance Brokers of Saskatchewan, Insurance Brokers of Newfoundland. I B A M - Insurance Brokers Association of Manitoba, Insurance Brokers of New Brunswick, I B A B C.
Good afternoon, everyone. I'm Heather Masterson, President and CEO of Travelers Canada. Thank you for joining us for our special programming today on the future of autonomous vehicles across Canada and beyond. Today's session is being presented by the Travelers Institute, our public policy division, in partnership with the leading industry associations you see here on the screen.
We couldn't be more grateful for the support of this group. So I'd like to extend a special thank you to our Chartered Insurance Professional Society and the Insurance Brokers Association of Canada, Ontario, Alberta, Nova Scotia, Newfoundland and Labrador, New Brunswick, Saskatchewan, Manitoba, and British Columbia. The future of transportation is a critically important issue for the industry. We thank these organizations for their leadership. And we're pleased to welcome the hundreds of members who are joining us from these groups today.
I'm now pleased to introduce the host of today's program, Joan Woodward. Joan is executive vice president of public policy for Travelers and president of the Travelers Institute, the company's thought leadership and public policy platform. She's a recognized leader in the insurance and financial services industry, an economist, and an award-winning Washington analyst. Joan has led numerous policy discussions across Canada over the years that are relevant to the insurance industry, including topics like distracted driving, cybersecurity, the economic outlook, and many more. Previously, Joan served at Goldman Sachs where she was a founding executive director of their Global Markets Institute. She also spent 12 years in Washington, DC on Capitol Hill as deputy chief of staff for the US Senate Finance Committee and is chief economist for the Senate Governmental Affairs Committee and the US House Budget Committee. Joan, over to you.
Thank you so much, Heather. I really appreciate the opportunity to host today's session. And welcome, everyone. Today's conversation will focus on the future of transportation and mobility. Specifically, what does the world going to look like with the evolution of autonomous vehicles? And what is regulation going to look like and legislation might look like in Canada? So Travelers does believe that insurance will play a critical role in the safe transition to autonomous vehicles.
Text, Insuring Autonomy: How auto insurance will lead through changing risks. Released October 4, 2021. Download the position paper Travelers Canada dot c a.
And just yesterday, we released a position paper sharing our perspectives on the issues in Canada. So we're pleased to facilitate this dialogue today and welcome a cross-sector perspective to help you navigate both the challenges and opportunities ahead for AVs.
Before we get started, I'd like to briefly share our disclaimer about today's program.
Title, About Travelers Institute Webinars. This program is an educational webinar presented by the Travelers Institute, the public policy division of Travelers. This session is offered for informational and educational purposes only. You should consult with your financial, legal, insurance or other advisors about any practices suggested by this program. Please note that this session is being recorded and may be used as Travelers deems appropriate.
And also, don't wait till the end of our program to submit your questions.
Submit live questions: Use the Q & A feature. LinkedIn connect: Joan Kois Woodward. Watch replays: Travelers Institute dot org. Take our survey: link in chat. Join our email list: Link in chat or institute at Travelers dot com.
So use the Q&A function at the bottom of your screen. Type in your questions. And, also, if you don't want me to read your name, you can hit anonymously. And so that's how to ask questions of our panelists. We want this to be very interactive.
I also encourage you to stay connected with us at the Travelers Institute. Join our email list, connect with me directly on LinkedIn, and visit our website to watch webinar replays. We also have a survey if you're interested in taking a survey of today's program. I do webinars almost weekly, friends. And so please feel free to join me. They're called Wednesdays with Woodward. I know today is a Tuesday. But we actually have a webinar tomorrow on cybersecurity. And we hope all of you will go on our website and register for that since it's a critical issue facing our industry. So all this and more is in the Zoom chat right now if you want to go ahead and sign up for bi-monthly webinars-- I'm sorry, bi-weekly.
We have a fantastic discussion in store today, including a terrific panel of experts about AVs. And I'm going to introduce those folks momentarily. But, first, we have a very special guest. And I'm thrilled to welcome the Honorable Stan Cho, Ontario's Associate Minister of Transportation. Elected in 2018, Minister Cho first served as a parliamentary assistant to the President of the Treasury Board and to the Minister of Finance before being appointed to the Cabinet. At the Ministry of Transportation, he works to build the next generation of transit infrastructure and modernize transportation policy to promote innovation and safety. Please join me in welcoming Minister Cho.
Thank you. Thank you for that kind introduction, Joan. I'm not sure if you want me on camera. It seems that the video can't start here. I do have a face for radio. So it's up to you.
We'd love you on camera if you can join.
There we are. Thank you so much, Joan. Thank you again for that very kind introduction. And good afternoon, everyone. I see we have a lot of people joining us today. And it's my pleasure to join you, albeit virtually. It'll be even better when I can shake your hand and see you face-to-face. And we certainly look forward to that day very soon. I also want to thank the Travelers Institute for inviting me to talk about our government's plan to create a more resilient transportation system that embraces innovation and technological change. I'm also really pleased to see my colleague from the Ministry of Transportation, Tasneem who will be speaking to you all a little bit later.
So I think this forum is awesome. It represents an excellent opportunity to learn more about how new technologies like connected and automated vehicles will transform the way people travel across Ontario. And we truly are at a crossroads now because to build a better future, we have to think and act differently and be nimble and flexible enough to respond to a changing world. And that means that that work starts yesterday. And, believe me, it's not going to be politicians who solve these challenges. It's innovators like you.
Now, in my previous role, as Joan mentioned, I was at the Ministry of Finance. And one of my first assignments was being tasked to work on the auto insurance file in Ontario. And that's not really an easy file. Auto insurance premiums in Ontario are one of the highest in the country and tinkering around the edges wasn't going to fix it. You had to get to the root of the problem. And that meant a deep dive. And, well, what a dive it was. 207 meetings on auto insurance later and what was clear was that to get better outcomes, it was possible, but it was going to take a lot of effort and considerable change. And you had to get to the root of the problem, a series of problems.
We know car parts are getting more expensive to repair. These cars are computers now. And a bumper change that would have cost you a couple hundred bucks a couple of decades ago, well, it's now $5,000 to $10,000 as I said because these are our computers. And we know that a large portion of claims also come from accidents caused by human error, and no easy solutions to deal with that issue. And, at the time, I always wondered what auto insurance policies would look like for automated vehicles and how the popularity of autonomous vehicles would affect insurance premiums overall. In fact, very early on, after my foundational briefings at Finance, I actually joked after seeing how difficult it was to help with auto insurance rates, can we just wait for automated cars to fix this problem?
So I think it's interesting that we're here today discussing autonomous vehicles because while my joke was a little premature, I do believe that there are countless new and emerging technologies that will absolutely change the way people get around. That means Ontario and our government needs to be ready. This pivotal moment in history of transportation is our chance to reimagine mobility and support the long-term resiliency of all sectors of the economy. And that's why our government is committed to exploring and removing barriers to safely adopting new technologies in the transportation sector.
We've begun already. We are investing $56.4 million over the next four years to create the Ontario Vehicle Innovation Network which will support a shift towards smart and clean technologies. And by building on the successful elements of the Autonomous Vehicle Innovation Network, we will accelerate the development of the next generation of electric, connected, and autonomous vehicles and mobility technologies. We're also matching a $295 million investment with the federal government to retool Ford Canada's Oakville Assembly Complex into a global electric vehicle battery production hub. These investments will boost our competitiveness in this vital sector and secure Ontario's role as a world leader in automotive manufacturing and innovation, all while securing thousands of good paying jobs across the province.
Embracing innovation isn't just a nice-to-have. It's a must. And the best new technologies and tools have all been the result of people dreaming, of thinking big, and taking a leap. Our province, just to name a few examples, has been home to a number of breakthroughs, from life-saving medicine like insulin to Canadarm to practical tools around your house like the paint roller. Anything is possible in our province. But that means we need to be ready. And that means we need to allow for great minds in our province, like those on this forum, to harness those great ideas. And those in insurance are well aware of the challenges that face that landscape, that you have to be adaptive, ready to move quickly, because things don't always go as planned. There's sometimes unintended consequences, and you need contingencies, plan Bs.
So I'll repeat, forums like this one are awesome. By learning more about the landscape on autonomous vehicles you are taking a hugely important step. And Ontario continues to be a leading jurisdiction in testing and deploying connected and automated vehicle technology. We've expanded the province's automated vehicle pilot. This is a pilot where new technologies that make use of higher automation levels are allowed to be actually tested on our roads.
For example, people will soon have a chance to ride the Whitby Autonomous Vehicle Electric Shuttle pilot project, also known as the WAVE. This pilot will help people connect to GO services and create more connected, efficient transit systems in Whitby. We recognize the exciting potential of these new technologies. But, of course, safety will always remain our top priority. So integrating vehicles with pedestrians and other vehicles is a crucial consideration before any new vehicle type will be allowed on the province's roads and highways. We understand that a safe, modern, and efficient transportation network will unleash growth unlike anything we've ever seen before.
It's been a really tough 19 months for all of us. But there will be a time when we can move past this pandemic, when talk of recovery is no longer good enough. And we know that those days are on the horizon. And that means we need to ensure the province's economy continues to grow, thrive, and remain globally competitive. Our collective prosperity depends on it. And so forums like this initiate those conversations and make sure that Ontario remains the economic engine of Canada and beyond for many generations to come. I could go on, Joan. But I think that's enough for me to allow for the discussion. I want to thank you again for the opportunity to join you here today. And I look forward to more conversations down the road. Back to you, Joan. Thank you.
That was just terrific, Minister Cho. Thank you so much for setting the stage for us. And your energy and time that you're spending on this for the entire population of Ontario, it's really fantastic initiative. So thank you for joining us.
Now I'd like to introduce our distinguished panel. First, we have Raed Kadri. He's the head of Ontario's Autonomous Vehicle Innovation Network, or AVIN, an initiative led by the government of Ontario to ensure its leadership in the future of the automotive and mobility sector. In this role, Raed drives Ontario's presence on the global stage, leading programming that supports R&D funding, talent development, tech acceleration, and demonstration sites. He also leads province-wide coordination of activities, public education, research, and more.
Next up, we have Tasneem Essaji. She is director of Transportation Policy Branch in Ontario's Ministry of Transportation. Her branch develops policies to support a clean, safe, modern, reliable, and accessible transportation system. This includes considering how emerging technologies, such as automated or electric vehicles, affect people and the environment. Tasneem has been with the Ministry of Transportation since 2012. And she has over 17 years experience in the public sector.
Next, we have Caleb Earnest. He is the vice president for personal insurance here at Travelers Canada and for personal insurance product management for Travelers in the Western region of the United States. Caleb joined Travelers in 2006 after serving as an officer in the United States Air Force. So thank you for your service. He's managed multiple regions within product management and held leadership roles of a lot of our key initiatives, including Optima Auto.
So, first, we're going to kick off today's discussion. Each of our panelists will have about five minutes for opening remarks. And then we'll have a moderated discussion. And then we're going to answer your questions. So make sure you put it in the Q&A feature while we're speaking. So, Tasneem, over to you.
Wonderful. Thank you, Joan.
Text, Ahead of the Curve: Ontario's Approach to Connected and Automated Vehicles (CV/AV). Travelers Institute - On the Horizon: The Future of Autonomous Vehicles, Integrated Policy and Planning Division. October 2021.
If you could move forward, great.
So, as Minister Cho mentioned, the context and the need to act now is clear.
Text, Technology development is accelerating rapidly, and Ontario's transportation system needs to be prepared for the widespread adoption of emerging technologies, such as connected and automated vehicles.
We know that technology development is accelerating, and we need to take advantage of these connected and automated vehicles.
Trends, 50% of vehicles are expected to ne fully auto mated by 2050 in Ontario. CV/AV market size to reach $60 billion by 2030. Risk of misuse of advanced driver-assistance systems. Increase in municipal interest to test emerging technologies.
As you can see, there's some really strong emerging trends in terms of the number of vehicles that are anticipated to be automated and the desire that many of our municipal partners have to start testing some of this technology.
But right now, in terms of where we are in the adoption of this technology, there is no legislative framework for the development of these connected and automated vehicles. We have a testing framework, but not a comprehensive legislative framework. We have good highway infrastructure. But that has limited ability to support these connected technologies in terms of being connected to the internet all the time. And there's limited public knowledge about what these technologies can and can't do and how they can be utilized safely. We're also working really closely with our transit agencies in terms of delivery of mass transit but also looking for how these technologies can be applied to make transit systems more efficient. If you could move forward.
Title, CV/AV Readiness Efforts to Date. Our efforts to date have focused on making Ontario one of the safest and most advanced transportation jurisdictions in the world and enabling a healthy, prosperous, and connected province. Ontario has developed legislation, policies, and programs that support CV/AV research and testing.
So what have we done so far? As Minister Cho mentioned, we're really overwhelmingly focused on ensuring that we have the safest and most advanced transportation jurisdiction in the world. We want to have a connected and healthy, prosperous community. So a few of the things that we've been doing in terms of trying to move forward and move the yardstick on CV/AV research and testing, so Raed is here to talk a little bit about the work of AVIN, so I won't get into that.
1, Supporting economic development and collaboration amongst the Autonomous Vehicle Innovation Network (AVIN). 2, Enabling testing on Ontario roads by launching Canada's first Automated Vehicle Pilot Program in 2016. 3, Working with partners to test CV/AV technology in infrastructure, including exploring the creation of an innovation corridor on a provincial highway. 4, Playing a leadership role in strengthening ongoing collaboration among jurisdictions, government, post-secondary institutions and key stakeholders to develop a Talent Roadmap and Skills Inventory. 5, Establishing an Ontario Smart Mobility Readiness Forum to support CV/AV readiness for municipalities. 6, Conducting a study on the impacts of CV/AVs on Ontario's transportation regulatory environment.
But we're working with partners across industry to test some of this technology.
One of the things we're exploring is the creation of an innovation corridor on a provincial highway, helping to support the Ontario Smart Mobility Readiness Forum, which is really a CV/AV forum for municipalities to come together with groups like AVIN and technology companies to try and figure out how municipalities can use this new technology. We obviously have the Automated Vehicle Pilot Program which allows testing on Ontario roads. We have played a leadership role in developing a talent roadmap and skills inventory. So this is really about trying to build that next generation of capacity in terms of workers and the skills that we need to actually deliver on this technology and keep it growing and prosperous. And then one of the last things that we're doing right now is looking at the impacts of CV/AVs on the regulatory environment. As I mentioned, we have a testing framework. But part of what we're looking at is what that more comprehensive legislative framework could look like. If you could move forward, please.
Title, What does readiness mean for Ontario?
So what does readiness mean for us? So I obviously spend a lot of my day job thinking about these things.
Text, Working on readiness now will allow Ontario's auto-tech sector to stay competitive and enable MTO to capture the full safety, economic, and social benefits of CV/AVs.
But really, we're looking at how the auto sector can stay competitive and that MTO and Ontarians can really find the benefits in CV/AVs and ensure that our roads maintain their safety. But also, what are some of those economic benefits, but also the social benefits? So how can this help communities that may be underserved, for example, to take advantage of these new technologies?
So there is a five pillars of focus from the Ontario perspective. As I mentioned, the legislative and regulatory framework, in keeping with our role as a regulator, obviously a very key part of the work that we're doing. One of the things that we are driving towards is looking at legislation that enables the safe testing and deployment of these kinds of vehicles and trying to understand what that space will look like.
Text, Updated legislation that enables safe CV/AV testing and deployment, including driver training, licensing, and vehicle requirements.
Planning for the future, so trying to really understand what the impacts of this technology could be for things like liability, for things like enforcement, and also for our physical infrastructure.
Understanding of the impacts, capabilities, and infrastructure needs of CV/AVs as well as the tools and policy necessary to optimize their deployment into the future.
So physical and digital infrastructure, as I mentioned, ensuring that we've got our physical infrastructure working the way that we need it to that so that these vehicles can use our roads, but also the digital piece to ensure that these connected vehicles and automated vehicles can actually be utilized.
And we can use Ontario as a testbed for some of this really exciting technology.
Text, CV/AV technology is integrated into provincial infrastructure, assets, and contracts to gain technical expertise and inform innovative ways to optimize investments.
I've mentioned a little bit about talent and developing talent. But it's also about innovation and validation of, for example, technology in transit and really looking at how we can build that economic benefit of these initiatives.
Industry-led projects lead to innovation in the automotive sector and CV/AV technology is tested and validated in transit.
And then, lastly, around collaboration, so we work really closely with our municipal partners as well as other jurisdictions in the national stage and then also trying to help educate the public on what this technology can do.
Ontario is a leader in CV/AV testing and deployment, collaborating with municipalities, other jurisdictions, and educating the public.
Title, Opportunities and Considerations for Ontario. Economic Development - Ontario can leverage its position as the leading jurisdiction in Canada for CV/AV research and development jobs. Job changes in traditional driving-based sectors.
So other opportunities and considerations that we're thinking about as I mentioned, there's the potential for a lot of economic growth through this technology. But this may lead to also job changes. As jobs become automated that have traditionally required drivers, looking at things like the trucking industry, for example, how will this technology change the work that people do?
Safety - Improve safety by avoiding human error, which causes over 90% of collisions. New safety risks could emerge from human and CV/AV interaction. Increased risk of cyberhacking and data privacy breach.
Again, safety is a common theme that MTO works on, obviously-- really looking at the potential for this technology to reduce human error but also what new safety risks may emerge, how cars and pedestrians interact or cars and cyclists. And then also, on the digital side, how do you prevent hacking or a car being used for things that we don't want them to be used for, as they will just be driving computers?
Managing Congestion Impacts - Decreased congestion costs through real-time info, collision response, road maintenance and 24-hour service. Longer commutes, increased demand from non-drivers, shifts from transit to AV services, and new empty vehicle trips. Competition for curb and sidewalk space.
And then, in terms of congestion, really looking at how this technology can to be used to help ease congestion. But also, is it just going to put more cars on the road? And will those things be negated?
Environment - Improved ride and car sharing may reduce vehicle use. Greater convenience may encourage more personal vehicle travel, sprawl, and less transit use.
And then also, the environment, we know that most AVs will be EVs. So there will be potentially reduced GHGs and those kinds of things, but may also just mean that people drive more because they're not having to physically drive themselves.
Accessibility and User Experience - Improved access to transportation (e.g. in underserved, rural, or northern communities) and non-drivers (visual, cognitive impairment). Uneven adoption and availability (urban versus rural, northern).
And then, lastly, looking at, as we mentioned, the people element of this. But how can we improve access for those who may not have been able to access vehicles or live in places where options for vehicle usage are limited? And there's a real opportunity but also a real challenge in making sure that those opportunities are equally distributed, especially across such a wide geography as we have in Ontario. Moving on. So that's a quick summary of the kind of work that Ontario is doing in the space right now.
Text, Thank you. Tasneem Essaji. Director, Transportation Planning Branch. Ministry of Transportation. Tasneem dot Essaji at Ontario dot c a.
I'm going to to hand it over to Raed.
Yeah, throw it over to Raed. Raed, take it away. Thank you.
Cementing Ontario's Leadership in the Automotive and Mobility Sector. October 2021.
Well, thank you so much, Tasneem. And thank you everybody for having me, Joan and the crew at Travelers and Travelers Institute. I want to thank Minister Cho for those fabulous opening remarks and his colleagues in the government for setting the tone and Tasneem and her team for really driving it through with some of the great stuff that we saw her talk about there. And that's just a glimpse into the hard work that that team does. I'm lucky to work with them on a fairly regular basis and see all the great effort that they do in this province.
And what are we all driving towards? Cementing Ontario's leadership in the automotive and mobility sector.
Title, The Ontario Advantage
So moving on, I would like to set the stage of why is this important to Ontario. And Tasneem talked on the regulatory side and the testing, piloting, adoption, deployment, which is a very important part of this. But let's talk about the economy.
We have been an automotive jurisdiction for over 100 years. It's a very big part of our economy in Ontario and in Canada. In 2019, we're with the second largest vehicle assembler in North America. And as we all saw towards the end of last year, a number of record-breaking announcements were made in terms of new vehicle platforms and new investments in manufacturing in our province and new technology platforms. And I think that's very important to note.
1.9 million vehicles in 2019.
We've got five automakers that make cars in this province and have been making cars in this province. And some of their facilities are the highest quality facilities of any of their facilities across the globe. And I think that's important to note that we have a very highly skilled workforce. We all put high quality from our manufacturing facilities in this province. And that's something the world is aware of.
OEMs including FCA, Ford, GM, Honda, and Toyota.
With that, in any jurisdiction that has an auto sector like that, we also have 700 parts suppliers that have been supplying technology into the global automotive sector for a number of years and then also 500 tool and die tool mold makers. That's the supply chain that we have in this province. And, like I said, any jurisdiction that gets anywhere close to what Ontario has in terms of an automotive sector has for a number of years been focusing on what is the opportunity with the introduction of a technology into vehicles connectivity and autonomy and now we're seeing electrification.
And the opportunity is very much there for Ontario. We have the right ingredients. So we talked about this automotive history that we have, this current strong and thriving automotive sector. We have a very strong manufacturing cluster in this province. But what we also have is a very strong tech cluster in this province.
2nd largest information and communication technology ICT cluster in North America with more than 20,000 ICT firms.
We have the second largest information and communications technology cluster in North America with over 200 ICT firms that have presence in this province, from small to big. We've got a fantastic entrepreneurial and innovator network and cluster in this province that are coming up with new ideas and new solutions and are now applying it into this space to solve some of the problems and some of the things that we want to accomplish. We've got top tier post-secondary institutions and the highest quality world-class talent, R&D centers, innovation hubs. We've got everything in this province.
And so, moving on, going back to what Tasneem mentioned, [? queue ?] the Ontario Autonomous Vehicle Innovation Network, AVIN, a key component of the government's plan for the auto sector called Driving Prosperity even captures the economic potential for the automotive sector and the smart mobility solutions to shape the future of where we're going in this province when it comes to auto. And very much I'd like to note that we've done it differently than any other jurisdiction because we pay attention to all of this. And we're very unique in this province where we've taken it from an economic development, job creation angle, but we also have approached it from a increased testing and piloting that supports increased adoption deployment in our province. And that's where you see the MTO team that's very much engaged in the work that we do.
And so, through AVIN, we've enabled our province's transportation and infrastructure network to plan and adapt for these transformations.
Text, AVIN includes support for SMEs to develop, test, and commercialize new automotive and mobility technologies; support for talent development ; and testing and demonstration sites.
We support small- and medium-sized enterprises, homegrown Ontario companies, made in Ontario technologies to grow into the global market, so that we can capture the opportunity that's presented itself through the expansion of the supply chain, the need for technology in the auto sector and the mobility sector. And so we do that. We support talent. Talent is a big, big piece, one of our number one ingredients and something that the sector will always need. And we support testing and piloting and demonstrations across the province.
The AVIN Central Hub leads the province-wide coordination of activities and resources; is a bridge for collaborative partnerships; and drives public education, research, and thought leadership.
What's also important to note is that we have a dedicated team that leads province-wide coordination activities and resources. We act as a bridge for collaborative partnerships, drive public education, research, thought leadership, and chase after strategic opportunities for our province. And, to the right, here are some of the numbers. And this is as of November 30, 2020. There's updated numbers coming. And they look great.
So far, through AVIN, Ontario government has secured $101 million in co-investment for their contribution. We have created and/or retained 365 jobs in this province. 301 R&D job placements have been facilitated through internships and fellowships, 51 commercialization partnerships supported. What does that mean? Ontario's small, medium-sized enterprise working with a global customer to commercialize new technology and get it into the global market, and that creates jobs in our province and grows our province's automotive cluster and our technology cluster. 245 small, medium-sized enterprises supported. $89 million in follow-on investment generated as a result of the support from the government of Ontario through AVIN and $25 million in increased revenue for those small- or medium-sized enterprises that participated. Moving on.
Title, AVIN's Focus.
So, in a nutshell, AVIN's focus, we're bridging Ontario's automotive, technology, and manufacturing clusters to support the growth of Ontario's ecosystem. We're advancing the growth of regional clusters. We're working at it regionally. We're bringing everybody together regionally to work on increasing commercialization and increasing regional economic development, increasing the number of regional technology companies that are growing, as well as supporting that region to better understand how they test and pilot the solutions within their regions. And then we're connecting that across the entire province. So it's very much an all-Ontario, altogether approach.
Text, Ongoing support for SMEs in commercializing technologies, scaling up, attracting investment, and accessing global markets.
We're driving deployment, adoption, piloting of smart mobility technologies across this province, ongoing support for small, medium-sized enterprises commercialize those technologies, scale those companies, attract new investments, and help them access global markets. Execute on opportunities and tactics to strengthen Ontario's automotive and mobility workforce and talent pipeline. You heard Tasneem talk about that. We're doing it very much hand-in-hand with her crew. Drive public education, research, analysis, thought leadership, activities, raise awareness around the potential and the opportunities for Ontario.
We're convening stakeholder groups, such as the one here, to talk about important topics that will lead us to the future and make sure that we as Ontario remain on top as transformation continues to take place, act as a bridge for collaborative partnerships, serve as a concierge for new entrants into Ontario's thriving ecosystem. And really, at the crux of it all is what we're doing is we're ensuring the Ontario remains a global leader in the automotive and mobility sector. I like to say we're driving for the future of that sector. And Ontario is going to be the one that shapes it. Moving on to the next.
Title, Ontario Smart Mobility Readiness Forum.
And so Tasneem talked a little bit about the Ontario Smart Mobility Readiness Forum. I like to characterize it this way. When we started this off in this province, we had a cluster of companies that we've grown and we've scaled. And we hit that point in this province where we continue to scale those companies. But what they're doing is actually, as they're commercializing new technology in Ontario, they're tapping some of our broader public sector-- our public sector actors, our transit agencies-- and asking them, can we test this on your train, on your infrastructure? And what that's doing is it's opening the eyes of our public sector actors to say, how does this technology help us on our road network, in our transportation infrastructure?
And so, with the support of the Ministry of Transportation and Tasneem's crew, we launched Ontario's Smart Mobility Readiness Forum, very much focused on readying the province for this mobility transformation. It's a platform for municipalities and the public sector agencies to discuss their transportation objectives, collaborate on goals, and prepare for the adoption of these technologies. And how do they implement these technologies? So it's a best practice sharing. It's a discussion. And it's also about bringing industry in there to talk about some use cases, some pilots, and so that we can learn from best practices. So, again, addressing the challenges and the needs related to adoption and deployment in this province and creating that dialogue, discuss progress, and think about different ways to look for support mechanisms so that our municipalities can better understand, start to adopt those technologies.
Text, Designed to support and address the challenges and needs related to the adoption and readiness of C/AVs and smart mobility technologies. Create dialog, discuss progress, and evaluate support mechanisms for municipalities, public sector agencies, and infrastructure owner/operators across Ontario.
Ontario Vehicle Innovation Network (OVIN).
And I just want to note, Minister Cho mentioned this, as part of the Ontario government's 2021 budget, they announced the commitment to create the Ontario Vehicle Innovation Network, $56.4 million over the next four years.
OVIN will build on successful elements of AVIN, accelerating the development of next generation electric, connected, autonomous and mobility technologies, as well as supporting Ontario's role as the manufacturing hub of Canada.
And that will build on AVIN. So we'll do the things that we did with AVIN, continue to accelerate the development of connected and autonomous vehicle technology, but add electrification, add mobility solutions to essentially capture the fact that the sector has transformed into the movement of people and goods.
And so technology is now being focused on the movement of people and goods rather than the vehicles, on how they're moving people and goods. And so we're also supporting Ontario's role as the manufacturing hub of Canada. And OVIN will continue to encourage innovation and collaboration through partnerships with small, medium-sized enterprises, post-secondary institutions, the industry, battery sector. And we really want to leverage Ontario's critical mineral development in the North. Next, I'm moving on.
Text, Thank you. Questions? Learn more and connect with us at avin hub dot c a.
So thank you. That's all for me. I hope I didn't go too quickly, and I didn't take too long. I'll turn it over to Caleb.
Insuring Autonomy: How auto insurance will lead through changing risks. Caleb Earnest, VP, personal Insurance. October 5, 2021.
Good afternoon. And thank you all for taking the time to discuss this important topic. Thanks to Minister Cho for the opening comments and the other panelists for joining us today. One thing is clear. When you listen to these opening comments, there's no shortage of passion for this topic. And there's significant work underway to enable innovation in Ontario. And there's also a theme that you hear around collaboration. And collaboration across stakeholders will be key to safely progressing transportation, including autonomous vehicles. We at Travelers share that passion on this topic. And I'm excited to be here, part of what we think is a start of a collaborative discussion this topic that we look forward to participating in.
So the first question I'll raise-- and many of you may be asking-- is, what role does insurance play as we think about a future of AVs? And so a bit of a history lesson here. And we'll move through this quickly. But, in our opinion, insurance has enabled innovation throughout the last 100-plus years. Starting with ensuring the first auto policy back in 1897 to ensuring air flight in the early 1900s and spaceflight in the late 1960s, insurance has been there to provide protection and coverage when the world's technology continues to evolve, especially in the space of transportation.
Technology Continues to Progress. Waymo's driverless ride service moves metro Phoenix toward autonomous future. Zoo x reveals first look at Autonomous Purpose-built Robotaxi. Ontario launches 10-year autonomous vehicle testing pilot. Volkswagen creates autonomy division for self-driving cars. Continental Automotive and Magna complete the first cross-border autonomous vehicle test.
And with each of these new advancements, insurance has helped to reduce uncertainty and help to answer the question around what happens when things go wrong.
So let's fast forward to today. What does the world in which we live today look like? We have new technology. We have new advancements in front of us. You heard it resounding through the different opening statements from the other panelists. In terms of the progress that's being made here, you see it almost daily with new headlines in terms of the continued progress in different companies and across different cities and municipalities. Testing is progressing across this country. We're seeing it across multiple locations in both Canada and the US. And we also know the effectiveness of the AV technology is also improving based on publicly available data in the US.
So the world of AVs is clearly upon us. There's no question that technology will continue to improve. But while the future is exciting to envision, there's many questions that still remain.
Title, Uncertainty Impedes Progress.
You heard a number of these same themes in some of the earlier commentary. When you think about the different questions that we need to answer and address across the stakeholders, we at Travelers would say we're bullish on the technology. We would caution betting against it.
But we also recognize there are questions and uncertainties that face us.
Communication - vehicles need to be able to communicate with other vehicles, roadways, pedestrians, and passengers. Technology - Complexities like bad weather and unique road conditions must be addressed. Regulation - standardized regulations for vehicle safety and insurance are critical. Infrastructure - roads, signs, and signals must e in appropriate condition. Consumer receptivity - consumer acceptance and the trustworthiness of the technology are imperative to progress.
You can see examples of them here. We won't spend a ton of time going through each of these. But I think as you go from left to right, from how will the AVs communicate not only with each other, but how will the AVs communicate with others involved in transportation networks? Think about pedestrians, bicycles. How will AVs be able to make those connections?
As we think about the challenges in front of us with adverse weather, think about snow. Think about ice conditions. How will AVs adapt to be able to be safe in those conditions? From a regulatory standpoint, what rules and regulations are needed? And where will they be established? And from an infrastructure standpoint, AVs rely heavily on existing infrastructure. Likely investments needed in new infrastructure. How will those investments be made? And what specifically is needed?
And lastly, and maybe most importantly as we think about this topic, is consumer receptivity. You look at a number of different surveys on this topic. There's still a lot of questions from the broader population. As you look at consumer understanding, consumer trust in the technology, there's work for us to do. And as you think about the work that we have in front of us, as Joan mentioned earlier, we're seeking to bring clarity to those questions through our position paper that we released yesterday.
Title, Insuring Autonomy: How auto insurance will lead through changing risks.
We are very excited about this introduction in Canada. This position paper marks several years of work, both in the US and in Canada. As we've continued to research this, as we've continued to work with different partners and different stakeholders, our position continues to be strengthened. And we are excited to share our perspective on that with you today.
And so I'm going to spend a second on this slide. I think it's important for everyone to understand our position. And I would start with the main perspective. And we think it's a simple one. And you see it in the top bullet there, that the current auto insurance structure can and will meet society's needs in an AV world. And I think specifically highlighting that last statement around the AV world, I think we have to recognize it's easy to envision that future state where we have all AVs on the road. But that is many, many years in front of us. We will see glimpses of that in pockets. But the reality is we'll be living in a world with a mix of both AVs and non-AVs for a long period of time.
And during that transition, we continue to see the auto insurance structure being the best mechanism for us to deploy in this environment. And in particular, when you look at that second bullet, we feel strongly about this because it is the most effective way to compensate crash victims. When we step back and look at this from a perspective of a consumer and someone who's been involved in an accident, the current structure and existing claim environment that we have is well-positioned to provide fair and timely compensation to victims of autonomous vehicles that are involved in a crash. We have structures in place today and mechanisms in place today, like subrogation, that can help in that transition and help to sort out fault on the backend without bringing the consumer to the front of that conversation and having them be involved in a long, prolonged process.
Third, we would say AVs will ultimately benefit society by reducing the number of crashes, injuries, and lives lost. We can already see that with the safety features that are present and are evolving and vehicles today. And when you step back and think about the impact this can have, in 2019, on Canadian highways, there were 1,762 lives lost. And we think it's important to talk to that number specifically and not an approximation because these are individual lives. These are families impacted. These are communities impacted. And we take this seriously and feel like, as a member of the insurance community and as a member of this broader stakeholder group, we have the opportunity to bring real change and real benefits to the communities around us.
But to get there, collaboration will be critical to make progress. And we believe strongly insurance and insurance leaders need to play a key role in that process. And so just emphasize the last two points, any AV legal or regulatory structure that's put forth we believe strongly must include insurance-specific policies. We also believe that insurance should play a critical role at the table of those discussions.
And lastly, as a long-time leader in this space, both on the personal side as well as commercial side, we believe Travelers is uniquely positioned to play a role and to be a leader in this space as we come together as a broader stakeholder community to bring AVs to this transportation network around us and to do that in the most safe and effective way possible. So lastly, just a thank you again for the participation today. Looking forward to an engaging conversation. Thank you, Joan, for bringing us together and for facilitating the discussion. And with that, I'll turn it back to Joan.
All right, Caleb. Thank you so much for that contribution. And Raed and Tasneem, we really appreciate all you're doing from the public sector standpoint. Just sounds like an incredible amount of activity. And, to be honest with you, we've been doing AV research and looking at different cities and what they're doing. And Ontario is clearly leading the way. So congratulations to you for what you've done, been able to do so far. So let's have a discussion. And I encourage all the attendees on the line-- we had nearly 1,000 people join us today to listen in, which is terrific. The Q&A function at the bottom there if you want to submit a question. And I'm happy to get those, as many as we can, in.
But first I want to get to a couple of questions we had, which is the opportunity here is enormous in our view, what AVs can do to transform the way we live. So, Raed, we wanted to host this session in part to really think through the opportunities ahead. So what do you think the economic impact of fully autonomous vehicles running around Ontario, can you help us define that opportunity for society?
Absolutely. If you think about it just right now with automated vehicles, automated futures, it's created such a big expansion in the supply chain. So you look at manufacturing and the manufacturing that happens. But they say there's a number of factors in terms of the supply chain and with the introduction and the need for technology into the sector. And it's driven by increased safety, that the priority is to increase safety. And then also, after that, you get all kinds of cool features that once safety is taken care of, you can start to look at some user experience stuff.
Anyway, the whole sector is driving towards this. And what that means is that there's a lot of opportunities for a jurisdiction like ourselves in Ontario that have a very supportive government that's driving the need to support commercialization of technology. We've got innovators, and we've got big companies that are operating here and all these other ingredients. Once you put them into a pot, you get a lot of companies that are scaling at a fairly rapid pace, are getting attracting a lot of investment. And there's a lot of customers globally that are looking to leapfrog others.
And so what that does is creates a great environment for Ontario for leveraging all of our clusters and merging them all together into one cluster. You can look now. And I can give you a number of examples of companies that have had fantastic ideas where they have had these applications in other sectors. But then with the introduction and increased need for technology in the auto sector are now looking at how the application fits in the auto sector. And for them, that's a faster way to scale and to grow.
We participated in a demo just last week for a company that we supported by the Ontario government through AVIN. And as a result of the support and a number of other things that enabled them to innovate, they've grown quite substantially. And so they're selling to customers. They're creating more jobs in our province. And it doesn't have to wait until vehicles are fully autonomous. It's going to happen all the way through. These companies are going to get themselves into the supply chain. And then that's only going to allow them to have the opportunity to continue to build on that technology and continue to own that position globally and right here from here in Ontario.
That's terrific. Thank you for that, Raed. Tasneem, a question for you on the milestones. So what are the milestones beyond technology? For example, infrastructure, public support, do you see as being really critical to safely expanding the AV of development? Because there's some skepticism out there. We've seen a lot of test crashes. Certainly in the United States, there's been several that have been widely publicized. But what is the government perspective on the milestones that we need to get through?
So I think there are a couple of things to consider. One is that we're really taking a phased approach. We want to make sure that this deployment is safe and that this adoption has that as the priority. And I think, as Raed mentioned, that's really where a lot of our focus has been. Right now, we're in the development stage where there's on-road testing and piloting. And we're really investing I think in the research and development around improving the safety and looking at the mobility benefits of the technology.
I think when CV/AVs are ready to be deployed, like have moved past the testing and are ready for full-scale deployment, I think the next big milestones are going to be legislation for the deployment, the upgrade of the infrastructure, especially around the connected infrastructure, looking at new insurance and privacy regimes because this technology is so different than how so much of our legislation is developed, how our insurance policies and our privacy regimes are designed, and I think integrating how these will work with our transit operations.
And then I think a big component will be public education and awareness. Like what can this technology do? What can't it do? What do you need to be aware of? And I think as the market matures and people become more familiar with it, we'll start to move to where it's how do we optimize the network, how do we refine our legislation as we learn through this. But I think the eventual goal will be to how do we integrate these vehicles into broader mobility tools. So how do they apply in mobility as a service technologies, et cetera? But I do think there's a lot of steps before we get to that ideal deployment stage.
OK. Excellent. Caleb, I'm going to go to you next. For the brokers that are with us on the line today, what can insurance professionals be doing now? What could they start doing now to be part of this AV ecosystem that's being built?
First of all, a big thank you for the brokers who have called in. We're really excited for the turnout from the broker community. And I think it's important for brokers to recognize their role in this. As the landscape changes, as the environment changes, the questions that their clients will have around their insurance needs will be top of mind. So, again, very encouraging to see them participate with us today.
A couple of thoughts. One, I don't think we need to stress this probably any more than we have already. But AVs are a reality that is in front of us. I wouldn't bet against it. And so take the time to really learn and get educated, both from a personal insurance perspective and a business insurance perspective. From a BI perspective, there's lots of opportunities in front of us. You've heard it from the other panelists in terms of the innovation that's being driven in this province and in this market. And so those will create new opportunities from a business insurance standpoint. And we think about the big ones. But there are going to be smaller opportunities too as you think about the supply chain that's involved in a larger ecosystem, from sensors to the analytics involved to the data companies that are emerging. And so how can you be a part of that and help to provide guidance to those new companies and entrants as they present themselves?
And then, from a PI perspective, I would just continue to emphasize continue to play your role as a trusted advisor. Your clients look to you for counsel. They look to you for guidance. And as new vehicles come on the roadways, they're already there today. There's levels of automation already present in a number of vehicles.
An example, automated emergency braking, which is very prevalent in most new vehicles in the US, it will be standard technology by '22. Make sure that that's something that you're understanding, investing in. So when your client comes to you asking about new cars for their teenage driver, you're right there ready and equipped to be able to answer those questions for them. And, lastly, join us. Be a part of the conversation. You're going to hear the questions before any of us. And you can help us really to elevate those questions that need to be looked at and solve for more broadly.
And I would also point out, for all the brokers on the line, we did publish this white paper. And you can find it at TravelersInstitute.org. Or ask any of your Traveler sales reps to send it to you. But it's a really thoughtful a white paper going through all the challenges and opportunities with AVs in the insurance space. And we specifically address product liability and other liability questions that you might have on your mind. And so do take a look at that. It was quite comprehensive that Caleb was instrumental in helping us write over the last couple of years.
All right. I'm going to turn the table on the audience now just for a moment. Everyone who's out there with us, we're going to ask you a audience polling question. And so look at your screens. And you're just going to click the answer here that you would most identify with. So the question is, if given the opportunity, would you ride in a driverless car or shuttle today? So, yes, I already have, yes, I haven't, but I would do so in the future, no, definitely no, count me out, or I'm not really sure. So give us your thoughts here.
We have a few people coming in saying they already have. So it looks to me like 3% of those answering this question said they already have. That's really interesting. Want to dig into that. About 50% of us said that we would. And about 50% of us said we're not sure or we don't know because we're hesitant.
Tasneem, let me go to you first. Does this surprise you, that 3% of our audience says they've already ridden in a driverless car? And what about the other 50% of us who are too afraid to or not sure?
So I think a couple of observations. One is that really understanding what levels of automation are I think are key. The Society of Engineers has a scale of what levels of automation are. And the likelihood that someone's ridden in a level five is zero because they don't exist yet, which is fully automated in all conditions. A lot of the vehicles we have on the road right now are a level three, three and a half. They're getting there. But they're not fully autonomous.
So 3% having ridden in, say, a Tesla that says that it's "fully automated," I can see why people would say that they've ridden in those vehicles. They're not what we would define as a fully automated vehicle in terms of a level five automation. But I'm not surprised. These cars are ubiquitous. And they're marketed in that way. That being said, Ontario has just launched a couple of shuttles. You may have ridden in one. A couple of our staff have gone in some of these test vehicles when we've done road testing. So I can totally see how people have had the opportunity to do that.
In terms of the folks that are reluctant, I would say I'm not surprised. There are a lot of concerns. There's that, well, I'm giving up control over this vehicle. I'm handing it over to a computer. Having that reluctance is not surprising and actually shows that you are thinking about, well, what happens if there's an accident? What happens if the power goes out? What happens if someone hacks my car? I think these are all legitimate fears and concerns. And I think that's why that public education piece about what the vehicles can and can't do and the investments that government needs to make and our private sector partners will have to make to assure people that these vehicles are safe to ride in.
And I think that's the key part of what I view my job and the role of my team in is to really think about, so what are the safety issues? What is the role of government in regulating this industry so that we can assure the traveling public that their vehicle isn't just going to start driving somewhere crazy? It's kind of like the zombie car just driving wherever it wants. I think we've all seen those horror movies. So I'm not surprised by that at all.
OK. So in addition to public education, which, of course, we're very much for educating our bikers, cyclists, pedestrians, and those not driving these vehicles-- but isn't regulation and legislation, isn't that the next steps? And what are you working on right now with the legislature? What do those conversations look like? What kinds of regulations are you looking for or will be needed in the coming years? Tasneem, I think that might be for you or Raed.
For sure. And I can definitely speak to that. Poor Raed. I always just jump right in because obviously this is something that's close to my heart. But this is absolutely the work that staff on my team are doing right now.
In Ontario, we have the Highway Traffic Act which defines how a driver and the rules of the road. But that will need a fundamental relook at because it's all based on the assumption that a human driver is maintaining control over all the driving tasks. So if the role of CV/AVs is reducing, and then eventually eliminating, the role of the human driver, we do need to change our laws and regulations because we need to ensure that there's safe deployment of this technology. So one of the things we're doing, because we're a leader in the CV/AV testing, we're now working on what are the policy issues associated with deployment so that we're ready with a regulatory framework when these AVs become more widely available.
Anything that we're looking at in terms of a future legislative and regulatory framework will keep and should keep road users safe. I think really understanding and being clear about the allocation of responsibility and liability, which, of course, is of key interest to you, to the folks here today. But provide also that regulatory certainty, but still leverage the benefits of this technology. I do think there's a lot of opportunity with this technology. But we want to balance that and make sure that it's safe to deploy. And we need to really think about what some innovative approaches to licensing, driver training, enforcement. There's a whole suite of things that we need to consider as we look at the rollout of this technology.
Wonderful. Get into some audience questions now. And we have a ton coming in. So thank you all. We'll try to get as many as we can. Caleb, we're going to I think go to you on this one. How will product liability come into play where there's a crash and the vehicle was operating fully autonomously? Or will it come into play at all? And that comes to us from Charry Grant with Insurance Corporate of British Columbia.
It's a great question. And it's probably one of the most important questions in this space. And maybe I'd start with just stepping back and talking about the role of insurance as we see it today. So auto insurance insures the vehicle owner is protected against any damage to that property. In addition to accidents, it also protects that consumer and vehicle owner from other risks, like theft, weather events, like hail.
Autonomous vehicles will be no different. And owners of AVs need that same peace of mind as they consider those risks. So product liability may play a role. But as the primary compensation system, our concern is it can be time-consuming and intensive and ultimately very difficult for a consumer to navigate, which is why, when we look at the current system in place, that is one of the main advantages and one of the examples we highlighted in our position up front is the speed of resolution. So as you think about a victim of an auto accident, their ability to be compensated quickly, efficiently, that's why we would lean on the current auto claim system that's in place today.
Again, the reality as we look forward that AVs and non-AVs will be on the roadways at the same time for a number of years. It's going to be a case-by-case set of circumstances and conditions that we will have to evaluate at those points in time. And in continuing to leave that in the hands of the the insurance company to be able to help guide that claimant through that process we feel is the best mechanism and allow us to use mechanisms like subrogation on the backend to help sort out fault.
Wonderful. Thank you for that. Raed, I'm going to go to you on this one. Can you share examples of successful AV implementations around the world? Any lessons for Ontario? What's going on in the rest of the world, China, India the US for that matter? What are you what are you watching?
I mean, I like to think that the people are watching us. So I can talk about the most successful implementations in our province. And I just want to extend the terminology, AV. We do a lot of stuff in this province, not just about automating vehicles, but increasing connectivity in vehicles as well as the infrastructure that supports it. So, really, I truly do believe-- and I talk to a lot of my colleagues across the globe. They are paying attention very closely to what we're doing in Ontario because we are very much taking a more robust and well-thought-out approach, which includes not just technology [INAUDIBLE] but also transportation, legislation, regulation, policy, as well as testing and piloting.
So we've got some successful pilots that have happened. One happened in Ottawa. And [INAUDIBLE] talked about that, an autonomous shuttle. I think-- Tasneem, correct me if I'm wrong-- that was the first AV pilot reg approval that was given to a driverless shuttle in this province. And that happened. And actually, we did a nice summary of the lessons learned-- how many miles it traveled and some of the lessons that we came out of that. And it actually had real passengers. And it was integrated into a transit system. And that happened in a part of Ottawa in a controlled environment. And I think it was geofenced a bit. But there was some great deployments that happened.
Just last week, a computer vision company working with Metrolinx as well as [? TELUS ?] demoed their technology which was increasing computer vision safety features inside a train. And so that train was running with that solution was able to detect objects in advance and to detect the traffic lights for the train, so increasing safety in our vehicles. And there's all kinds of examples-- and I can go on-- of different deployments that we've done in this province right now that the world pays attention to. So when you go back to the question of who we're looking at globally, I like to think that we're not really looking at anybody globally. We're leading the way and letting the globe follow us. And that's really how we look at it Ontario.
That's wonderful. And I would agree with you there. OK. Tasneem, a question for you. What is the Ontario government doing about cybersecurity threats to AVs and deployment of the shuttles, for example? Or how you're thinking about cybersecurity? I mean, there's two kinds of companies we like to say out there. There's companies that have been hacked and companies that don't know that they've been hacked yet. And, unfortunately, we sell a lot of cybersecurity insurance at this company. And we see every day how businesses are so disruptive. And so how are you thinking about cybersecurity?
We work really closely with our colleagues in the digital strategy. So Ontario has a digital strategy as well that's also grappling with some of these issues around how to protect cybersecurity more generally. I think this is a global issue. This is not just an Ontario issue. And I think, as Raed said, there are lots of companies in Ontario that are trying to tackle these problems. I think, from the government perspective, it is a real challenge. As technology innovates, how do we protect people in these circumstances? Like this is my nightmare scenario is that an organization hacks into some cars and causes mass collisions and those kinds of things.
And I think that's why, as Raed mentioned, a lot of the research and innovation that's happening around connectivity is really important and becomes where a lot of our attention is focused because it's not just about the vehicles. It's also about how they connect to the infrastructure around them and ensuring that that infrastructure is robust and protected. And I think that's where our colleagues who are working on things like the broadband strategy and the digital strategy are really working with the companies that are proponents here to ensure-- because that's a huge priority for the companies as well to make sure that we're not just protecting the vehicles but also individual businesses, et cetera, as evidenced yesterday when there's a global outage on something. It can be catastrophic. Sure that we're protecting that. I will just say I think a lot of it is very early stages. So we don't have good answers for that right now. But I think we will because the technology is accelerating so quickly.
Wonderful. We are at the top of the hour. This hour completely flew by so fast. But I'm going to commit to everyone on the line here. We're going to do another one of these because clearly the content and there's so much more to talk about. So we will commit to doing another for our Canadian friends in the coming months.
But you're also going to receive a replay. So check your email in the next day or so. We'll have a replay of this session. You can forward it to any of your friends or colleagues to watch because I know it was very, very helpful. So let me thank our speakers. I cannot believe how quickly it went, the time. It was so fascinating. So we really appreciate the three of you and Minister Cho for joining us today. Keep an eye out for other communications from us.
As I said, I host a Wednesday webinar on most Wednesdays. And here's a list of those that are upcoming.
Wednesdays with Woodward Webinar series. Upcoming webinars: October 6 - The Fight Against Cyber Crime from Prevention to Prosecution with Travelers' Jeff Klenk and Assistant U.S. Attorney Edward Chang. October 20 - The Tech-Enabled Insurance Claim Revolution with Travelers' Senior Vice President Patrick Gee. October 27 - The Changing Risk Landscape: Underwriting for the New Normal with Travelers' Chief Underwriting Officer Rick Keegan. November 3 - The Pandemic Era Opioid Crisis: Where are we now? How can we break the cycle? with Milken Institute's Sabrina Spitaletta and Travelers' Rich Ives. Register: Travelers Institute dot org.
We have one tomorrow on cybersecurity. You don't want to miss that. So go ahead and go and just register right now, TravelersInstitute.org. Cybersecurity, we have the Department of Justice talking about how they track down and prosecute cyber criminals and also talking about cyber insurance and what you need to know.
Submit live questions: Use the Q & A feature. LinkedIn connect: Joan Kois Woodward. Watch replays: Travelers Institute dot org. Take our survey: link in chat. Join our email list: Link in chat or institute at Travelers dot com.
And I encourage you to take the survey, which is in the chat. You can connect with me directly on LinkedIn and follow me. I post lots of invitations to our sessions like this on LinkedIn. So I thank you again to our terrific speakers and the minister for joining us today.
Text, On the Horizon: The Future of Autonomous Vehicles. Travelers Institute. Travelers. IBANS- Insurance Brokers of Nova Scotia, ibaa - Insurance Brokers Association of Alberta, Insurance Brokers Association of Canada, C I P Society, i b a o - Insurance Brokers of Ontario, Insurance Brokers of Saskatchewan, Insurance Brokers of Newfoundland. I B A M - Insurance Brokers Association of Manitoba, Insurance Brokers of New Brunswick, I B A B C.
And thank you again, Heather, for hosting us. Take care, everyone. Stay safe. And we'll be back in touch soon.
What did we learn? Here are the top takeaways from “On the Horizon: The Future of Autonomous Vehicles.”
- We are at a pivotal moment in history. Minister Cho opened the session underscoring that we are at a crossroads. “To build a better future, we have to think and act differently, and be nimble and flexible enough to respond to a changing world. That means that the work starts yesterday,” he said. “This pivotal moment in the history of transportation is our chance to reimagine mobility and support the long-term resiliency of all sectors of the economy.”
- Provincial governments are planning for the future. According to Tasneem Essaji, Director of the Transportation Policy Branch within Ontario’s Ministry of Transportation, Ontario has active on-road AV testing and piloting. She stressed that, while there is a legislative framework in place for testing, there is no equivalent written law for connected or automated vehicle deployment. This will be a major piece needed in the continued evolution of AVs in Canada, she said, and something they are driving toward.
- Insurance has a track record in helping enable transportation innovation. Travelers Canada Personal Insurance Vice President Caleb Earnest underscored that the insurance industry needs to be at the table as a stakeholder in conversations about AVs. The history of transportation innovation shows a precedent for insurers role in this kind of transition: “Insurance has enabled innovation through the last hundred years plus,” Earnest said, noting that in the U.S. Travelers issued the first auto insurance policy in 1897, insured air travel in the early 1900s and provided coverage for space flight in the 1960s. “With each new advancement, insurance has helped reduce uncertainty and helped answer the question ‘What happens when things go wrong?’”
- Provinces are aiming high on AVs and innovation. According to Minister Cho, “Embracing innovation isn't just a ‘nice to have,’ it's a must,” adding that Ontario is committed to removing barriers to safely adopt new transportation technologies. Raed Kadri, Head of Ontario’s Autonomous Vehicle Innovation Network, said the world has its eyes on Ontario, which has all “the right ingredients” to capitalize on the opportunities ahead, including having the second-largest vehicle assembler in North America, five original equipment manufacturers, more than 700 supplier companies and leading research institutions.
- What happens when an AV is involved in a collision? Speaking to the hundreds of insurance brokers in the audience, Earnest shared that the current insurance structure is ready and equipped to handle a future with AVs, a position outlined in a new Travelers Institute® position paper, ‘Insuring Autonomy: How auto insurance will lead through changing risks.’ “We feel strongly about this because it’s the most effective way to compensate crash victims,” he said. Alternative options such as product liability compensation mechanisms, in which a manufacturer would compensate a crash victim if they are found to be at fault, could be “time-consuming, intensive and ultimately very difficult for a consumer to navigate,” according to Earnest. Insurers compensate victims right away and, through use of subrogation, can sort out liability on the back end, without having to make consumers wait, he said.
- Now is the time to get smart about AVs. Earnest underscored how encouraging it is for insurance brokers to be at the table. “I wouldn’t bet against the technology, so take the time to really learn and get educated,” he said. “Continue to play the role of trusted advisor when clients come to you with questions.” He also highlighted that there will be opportunities large and small for the insurance industry to do business with companies in the AV ecosystem across personal and commercial insurance, noting the vast supply chain involved, from developing sensors to analyzing data.
Minster Cho echoed the encouragement for professionals to continue getting smart on AVs. “Forums like this one are awesome. By learning more about the landscape on autonomous vehicles, you are taking a hugely important step.”
Presented by the Travelers Institute, Travelers Canada, the Chartered Insurance Professionals Society, the Insurance Brokers Association of Canada, the Insurance Brokers Association of Ontario, the Insurance Brokers Association of Nova Scotia, the Insurance Brokers Association of Newfoundland & Labrador, the Insurance Brokers Association of New Brunswick, the Insurance Brokers Association of Saskatchewan, the Insurance Brokers Association of Manitoba, the Insurance Brokers Association of British Columbia and the Insurance Brokers Association of Alberta.
President and Chief Executive Officer, Travelers Canada
The Honourable Stan Cho
Associate Minister of Transportation, Government of Ontario
Vice President, Personal Insurance, Travelers Canada
Director, Transportation Policy Branch, Ministry of Transportation, Government of Ontario
Head, Ontario's Autonomous Vehicle Innovation Network (AVIN)
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Travelers Insurance Company of Canada, The Dominion of Canada General Insurance Company and St. Paul Fire and Marine Insurance Company (Canada Branch) are the Canadian licensed insurers known as Travelers Canada.