PTIO Submits Comments to DOT on Impact of AV Technologies on Workforce

Washington, D.C.— This week, the Partnership for Transportation Innovation and Opportunity (PTIO) – whose members include American Trucking Associations, Daimler, FedEx, Ford, Lyft, Toyota Motor North America, Uber,and Waymo – responded to the Department of Transportation’s (DOT) Request for Comments on the scope of a congressionally-directed analysis on the impact of automated vehicle technologies (AV) on the workforce.

“PTIO’s top priority is to identify and encourage adoption of policies and programs that will help connect individuals with AV-related economic benefits,” said PTIO Executive Director Maureen Westphal. “Collaboration among industry, government, academia, and other stakeholders is critical to ensure there are opportunities for all workers during the transition to an AV future. An evidence-based understanding of the interplay between AVs and the workforce is fundamental to this mission, so we are grateful to Congress and DOT for pursuing the study and for allowing us the opportunity to provide recommendations on its scope. PTIO and its members stand ready and willing to assist the agency as it conducts its analysis, and we look forward to continued opportunities for collaboration as we all work together to improve quality of life and economic opportunity for all Americans.”

Summary of PTIO’s Comments:

–      As the study explores possible AV-related labor force transformation and the pace in which it may occur, PTIO suggests that the agencies focus on job opportunities that will arise from AV manufacturing and deployment, including an analysis of new jobs, which will be created in the different stages of AV adoption. This information is vital in developing strategies to assist displaced workers and facilitate the transition into sustainable and long-term career paths.

–      Equally important is setting labor force training needs.  PTIO recommends that the agencies explore how industry and employers may help identify and bridge any gaps in proposed training programs designed to connect workers with opportunities in the new economy.

–      Understanding what motivates incumbent workers either to take advantage of employer-provided training and educational help or to seek reskilling opportunities is also critical. PTIO hopes the agencies will research these factors so stakeholders can better understand how individuals will respond to an evolving workplace.

–      Further, PTIO urges the agencies to explore the quality-of-life benefits associated with AV technology.  A detailed analysis of this information will be critical in developing tomorrow’s workforce.

o   In the trucking industry, for example, AV technology represents an opportunity to enhance jobs and improve working conditions.

o   AVs may additionally serve to broaden employment opportunities for those without either a personal vehicle or access to public transportation.

To read PTIO’s full comments as submitted to DOT, click here.