Let’s recap, what is the CAM Roadmap UK? 

The Roadmap first and foremost is a tool, aimed to be as useful to as many people as possible in academia, industry and government so we can all work together towards the vision and mission of CAM in the UK. 

Here at Zenzic, we are focused on collaboration, so not only was the Roadmap created to demonstrate what is happening in the industry and what should be happening as we as look forward, we wanted it to be used as a tool around which people can collaborate. 

It’s probably worth saying what it cannot be as well. As it is not intended to be a technology Roadmap for everybody who’s developing technology, this is just too vast. We wouldn’t be able to get this all into one Roadmap and by the time it was put together, things could be out of date due to the speed at which technology is advancing. 

These advancements can be an issue with creating a Roadmap in this space, as once published, things can be out of date. It takes time to comprise a Roadmap with this kind of rich data and with things constantly changing. It’s one of the reasons why this update of the Roadmap is simplified to make it easier to maintain. 

Why have you created a revision of the CAM Roadmap UK and why now? 

The first Roadmap was published in 2019 and quite a lot has happened since then. Not only in the world of CAM, but our economy, our society, the pandemic, and the advancement of technology.  

We’re having more things delivered to our house, more of our lives are online, and that got accelerated by the COVID pandemic – so, the Roadmap must reflect these changes too.  

The other thing that’s important about now is that in the original Roadmap was split into time phases. The phase that we were in previously was around doing trials and experimentation and now we have moved on from that, with pilot projects already running and now entering a phase of deployment with the Innovate UK and CCAV competition funding.  
As we enter this phase, it’s important to document what it’s going to take to go from deployments to at scale deployments. And that’s one of the things that comes through in the new Roadmap. We’ve selected specific topics, four of the six topics are deployments: they’re different types of passenger transport and good transport.  

Is not just about what’s on the vehicle, it’s also about what’s in the infrastructure. What are our roads like? What is our communication infrastructure like? How do we make those things interoperable across different authorities? What it’s going to take to get to the next steps? These are all really important questions at the transport systems level in the next phase for these deployments. 

One of the big lessons we learnt from the previous Roadmap is that whilst it was great to have lots of detail in there, in some respects it can be overwhelming and therefore a barrier to use. 

You needed to have a very good question to ask to have utilised the previous version of the Roadmap in the best way. With this Roadmap we have structured it differently. We’ve pulled out the trends and drivers, and looked at what product services and systems will be needed to deliver on those, and then looked at the capabilities and enablers that are required in order to make those things happen. 

How can government and industry interact with the Roadmap? 

We touch on both industry and government inside the Roadmap because they’re enablers around regulation and policy and traditionally where the technology solutions would originate. There is a role there for the regulation, but also for industry like our Testbed community as they also play big role in the testing and validation, insurance and sign off of these vehicles need before they’re allowed onto public roads, as they can be tested at CAM Testbed UK. 

Several years ago it was harder to put those things in place, and now you can see how they will take us forward into a scaled position or at deployments at scale.  

In the trends and enablers piece, you’ve also got three voices in there, can you talk us through these?  

Yes, so you’ve got industry and government and there are also trends around net zero and levelling up which are which are big elements of the wider government strategy – transport and economy or strategy for the economy. The other voice we have is the public, as we need to cover the needs of the consumers. The public have got certain expectations and needs of transport; whether that is having it on demand, their safety, it being affordable and easy to use for them – so we have thinking to do here to make it desirable. This is covered in the Roadmap, but requires more insights work with changing and competing demands and expectations, to ensure public acceptability. 

For example, if autonomous driving only turns out to be that you get an Uber like you did before on your own only there’s no driver – that doesn’t really support net zero, it doesn’t help congestion, it doesn’t help consumption. 

Autonomy is certainly better in channels like freight where we’ve got labour shortages. As that’s one of the trends that is effecting the amount of drivers we have. An autonomous truck can be driven at night when the roads are quieter, it doesn’t make any difference to an autonomous vehicle whether it’s day or night as it’s not relying on human eyesight the same, and it doesn’t need to take a break every two hours. So there’s a clear business cases around freight. 

One of the other trends that is coming across is reasonable access to transport. A very obvious application of an autonomous vehicle is where it provides transport for somebody who can’t drive, this could be because of their age or a physical impairment that prevents them from driving. 

There is very much both an industry and government role there to hear what the public wants – as we need the technology to be adopted and used 

Why the UK CAM Roadmap to 2035? 

The original Roadmap was to 2030 and gave a Roadmap of a 10-year time horizon. 

2030 was the original vision which gave the original Roadmap a 10-year timeline, however so much has happened over the past five years, and while we are still six and a half years away from 2030, this is still no time at all – so we’ve now extended the horizon to 2035 to give a further 10-year timeline. 

We are now in the process of assessing against the original deliverables of the Roadmap and looking at what kind of progress was made since it was originally created in 2019, because some of those deliverables of those objectives still remain relevant. And while some progress will have been made, we won’t have cracked it in the last three or four years, so we’re doing an appraisal of what things did happen, what things didn’t and why. Because of course we have to take things into consideration things like the pandemic that slowed things down.  

You can read all about the UK CAM Roadmap to 2035 including access to the interactive roadmap and the executive summary report here