WMG academic joins DfT’s Science Advisory Council

Dr Siddartha Khastgir from WMG, University of Warwick, has been appointed to be on the DfT’s Science Advisory Council, where he will advise on a wide range of science and engineering issues, such as enrolment of Autonomous Vehicles.

The DfT’s Science Advisory Council provide the DfT with advice and challenge on key areas of science, engineering and technology, supporting the role for the DfT Chief Scientific Adviser Professor Sarah Sharples, by ensuring departmental activity is informed by the best external expertise and evidence, identifying relevant emerging issues and trends and assuring DfT’s use of science and technology.

Dr Siddartha Khastgir is Head of Verification and Validation of Connected and Autonomous Vehicles at WMG, University of Warwick. In 2019 he was awarded a UKRI Future Leader Fellowship focusing on Autonomous Vehicle safety standards. Leveraging his research on Autonomous Vehicles safety, he will focus on taking a cross-domain approach to safety in land, marine and air.

With his new appointment on the council Dr Khastgir will help advise DfT on the technological and societal challenges surrounding introduction of new technologies, and how they can be enrolled in UK safely and efficiently. He comments:

“To be a part of the Department for Transport’s Science Advisory Council is incredibly exciting, I’m looking forward to working with other experts in the field to provide advice to help the DfT to inform future policy, with its foundations in strong research outputs. Not only do we need to create safe systems, we need to communicate with the public to ensure public acceptance.”

Margot James, Executive Chair at WMG, University of Warwick adds “I am delighted to hear that Siddartha has been appointed to the Department for Transport Science Advisory Council, a reflection of his world-leading research into safety for connected and autonomous vehicles. I will be watching with interest to see how the DfT moves this emerging technology forward, and look forward to Siddartha being a key part of this.”

UKRI Future Leaders Fellowships Director Stephen Meader said, “The world leading research undertaken by Dr Khastgir and his team is vital for the development of safe autonomous vehicles that can cut both congestion and carbon emissions.

“Dr Khasgir’s appointment to the Department for Transport’s Science Advisory Council (SAC) demonstrates both the importance of this work to the future of mobility in the UK and the value the Future Leaders Fellowships scheme brings in enabling his research.”

Other new appointees joining six existing members include Professor Alastair Lewis, Professor of Atmospheric Chemistry, University of York, James Gaade, Head of Programme Management, The Faraday Institution, Professor William Powrie, Professor of Geotechnical Engineering, University of Southampton, Dr Emma Taylor, Head of Digital Safety, RazorSecure Ltd and Professor Patricia Thornley, Director of the Energy & Bioproducts Research Institute, Aston University.

Department for Transport Chief Scientific Adviser, Sarah Sharples, said: “I’m pleased to welcome the new members appointed to the Science Advisory Council. They bring significant additional expertise in key areas that will support DfT’s effective use of science and engineering. I look forward to working with them.”

(Picture – WMG)

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