Plenary Speakers

Plenary Speech 1

Incorporating Human Intelligence into Intelligent Vehicles

Gill A. Pratt

Chief Scientist and Executive Fellow for Research, Toyota Motor Corporation
Chief Executive Officer, Toyota Research Institute, Inc.


6 Years Ago, at a Press Conference in Japan announcing the Founding of the Toyota Research Institute, a reporter asked how soon we believed our work would result in cars achieving full autonomy.

Our answer then was that the problem we were addressing was not the autonomy of cars, but the autonomy of people: How can we develop technology to help human beings, regardless of age or ability, lead lives that contribute to others without the indignity and limitations of being dependent on others?

Today, as then, there is a tendency for us to forget that the purpose of all technology is to serve human beings. As we expand our work in intelligent vehicles from autonomy to other systems, how can we remember this essential lesson?


Dr. Gill Pratt is Chief Scientist and Executive Fellow for Research of Toyota Motor Corporation (TMC), Chief Executive Officer of Toyota Research Institute (TRI), and Executive Advisor of Toyota Central R&D Labs., Inc. (TCRDL). Prior to joining TRI as its founding CEO in January 2016, Dr. Pratt served as an Executive Technical Advisor to Toyota Motor Corporation.

As TMC Chief Scientist and Executive Fellow for Research, and as Executive Advisor at TCRDL, Dr. Pratt applies his expertise and experience to guide research strategy for TMC and the Toyota Group. At TRI, Dr. Pratt directs research to create new capabilities for Toyota in Active Safety, Automated Driving, Robotics, and other Human Amplification technologies.

Dr. Pratt previously led the Robotics Challenge, Robotics Research, and Neuromorphic Computing research programs for the U.S. Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA), where he served as a program manager in the Defense Sciences and Tactical Technology Offices from January 2010 through August 2015.

Dr. Pratt was an Associate Professor of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science, and Director of the Leg Lab at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT). Subsequently, he was a founding Professor of Electrical and Computer Engineering and Associate Dean of Faculty Affairs and Research at Franklin W. Olin College of Engineering. Dr. Pratt’s academic research focused on robotics and intelligent systems. Specific areas of interest included interfaces that significantly enhance human/machine collaboration, mechanisms and control methods for enhanced mobility and manipulation, low impedance actuators, the application of neuroscience techniques to robot perception and control, and the impact of Robotics and AI on society. Dr. Pratt holds several patents in series elastic actuation and adaptive control.

Dr. Pratt earned Doctor of Philosophy (1990), Master of Science (1987), and Bachelor of Science (1983) degrees in Electrical Engineering and Computer Science from MIT. His Ph.D. thesis was in the field of spiking computation in natural and artificial neural systems. Dr. Pratt also worked for the Physics and Computer Science Research Departments of Bell Telephone Laboratories in Murray Hill, New Jersey.

Plenary Speech 2

The Open Source Journey towards Intelligent Vehicles for Everyone

Shinpei Kato

Associate Professor, The University of Tokyo
Founder & CTO, Tier IV, Inc.


Autoware, originally created by Nagoya University has now become a widely used complete open-source software stack for research and development of autonomous driving technology, and its presence is continuing to grow throughout the globe. This success is mainly due to its open-source approach which enables developers from all over the world to contribute. The Autoware Foundation inherited the project and aims to further strengthen the ecosystem as a community. In this talk, we discuss in detail our journey towards our goal to empower individuals and organizations to collectively make safe intelligent vehicles a reality.


Shinpei Kato is an associate professor for the Graduate School of Information Science and Technology at the University of Tokyo, and the founder and CTO of Tier IV, Inc. He also serves on the Chairman of the Autoware Foundation. Previously, Shinpei was an associate professor at the Graduate School of Information Science, Nagoya University from 2012 to 2016. He was also a postdoctoral scholar at Keio University, the University of Tokyo, Carnegie Mellon University, and University of California, Santa Cruz. His expertise includes computer architectures and operating systems for embedded and real-time systems as well as parallel and distributed systems.

Plenary Speech 3

Why Does it Take so Long to Deploy Automated Vehicles?

Christoph Stiller

Professor, Karlsruhe Institute of Technology


Vehicle automation is among the most fascinating trends in automotive electronics and a huge challenge to the IV community. This talk with discuss the state-of-the-art and a potential evolution of automated vehicles. We discuss lessons learned from the autonomous Bertha Benz memorial tour from Mannheim to Pforzheim recent international competitions.

We investigate perception and planning methods for automated vehicles and elaborate on the potential of cooperative driving. Beyond the fascinating progress that we have witnessed in the past decades, the remaining challenges for achieving full autonomy for self-driving cars still require substantial research. Beyond reliable perception, provable behavioral safety and safety validation are prominent examples for these. Furthermore, fail-safe requirement lead to novel vehicle architectures. Technical supervision and teleoperation may lower the hurdles for deployment. Last, not least, a societal consensus on an acceptable risk level is required and compliance with this consensus must be tracked in empirical safety analysis.


Christoph Stiller studied Electrical Engineering in Aachen, Germany and Trondheim, Norway, and received the Diploma degree and the Dr.-Ing. degree (Ph.D.) from Aachen University of Technology in 1988 and 1994, respectively. He worked with INRS-Telecommunications in Montreal, Canada for a post-doctoral year in 1994/1995 and with Robert Bosch GmbH, Germany from 1995 - 2001. In 2001 he became Chaired Professor and Director of the Institute for Measurement and Control Systems at Karlsruhe Institute of Technology, Germany.

Dr. Stiller serves as Senior Editor for the IEEE Transactions on Intelligent Vehicles (2015-ongoing) and as Associate Editor for the IEEE Intelligent Transportation Systems Magazine (2012-ongoing). He served as Editor-in-Chief of the IEEE Intelligent Transportation Systems Magazine (2009-2011). His automated driving team AnnieWAY has been finalist in the Darpa Urban Challenge 2007 as well as first and second winner of the Grand Cooperative Driving Challenge in 2011 and 2016, respectively. He has served in several positions for the IEEE Intelligent Transportation Systems Society including being its President 2012-2013.