Bryant Walker Smith is an assistant professor in the School of Law and (by courtesy) in the School of Engineering at the University of South Carolina. He is also an affiliate scholar at the Center for Internet and Society at Stanford Law School, chair of the Emerging Technology Law Committee of the Transportation Research Board of the National Academies, and a member of the New York Bar.
Bryant's research focuses on risk (particularly tort law and product liability), technology (automation and connectivity), and mobility (safety and regulation). As an internationally recognized expert on the law of self-driving vehicles, Bryant taught the first-ever course on this topic and is regularly consulted by government, industry, and media. His recent article, Proximity-Driven Liability, argues that commercial sellers' growing information about, access to, and control over their products, product users, and product uses could significantly expand their point-of-sale and post-sale obligations toward people endangered by those products.
Before joining the University of South Carolina, Bryant led the legal aspects of automated driving program at Stanford University, clerked for the Hon. Evan J. Wallach at the United States Court of International Trade, and worked as a fellow at the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development. He holds both an LL.M. in International Legal Studies and a J.D. (cum laude) from New York University School of Law and a B.S. in civil engineering from the University of Wisconsin. Prior to his legal career, Bryant worked as a transportation engineer.
Law of the Newly Possible: http://newlypossible.org
One of my courses this semester is Technology Law: Law of the Newly Possible. This seminar, at the University of South Carolina School of Law, examines how law responds to, incorporates, and affects innovation. Read more » about Seminar on the Law of the Newly Possible
Road Vehicle Automation, which was inspired by the Transportation Research Board's eponymous 2013 workshop at Stanford, collects a variety of public, private, and academic perspectives on this nascent transportation revolution. Read more » about New Book: Road Vehicle Automation
After a great deal of careful work, the California Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) today released its final rule for the testing of "autonomous vehicles" on public roads in the state. Accompanying this rule is a Final Statement of Reasons that, on page 9, contains a striking exchange: Read more » about Something Interesting in California's New Automated Vehicle Testing Rule
Some ninety percent of motor vehicle crashes are caused at least in part by human error. This intuitive claim is a fine place to start discussions about the safety potential of vehicle automation. (It is not an appropriate place to end these discussions. Read more » about Human error as a cause of vehicle crashes
Thank you for reading my posts this week. If you happen to be Eugene Volokh or Ken Anderson, thank you in particular for making them possible. And if you were one of my thoughtful commenters, thank you for questioning and challenging; I have read your remarks with great interest. Read more » about Looking at My Vehicle Automation Entries in the Rear-View Mirror
Since the 1950s, the Long Beach Freeway has linked the massive Ports of Long Beach and Los Angeles to, roughly, the rest of the continental United States. Because much has changed in trade and traffic since then, California’s relevant transportation authorities have decided that perhaps this freeway should change as well. Read more » about The Impact of Automation on Environmental Impact Statements
""They're probably legal already, and that's true in pretty much most states," said Bryant Walker Smith, a legal expert and fellow at the Center for Automotive Research at Stanford (CARS).
California's policies will likely influence how other states develop regulations for self-driving vehicles, although other states won't necessarily envision the same rulemaking process, Smith told Live Science. "Some states might simply clarify that automated-vehicle testing is legal [already] under certain conditions," he said." Read more » about Rules for Self-Driving Cars in Legal Gray Area
"Bryant Walker Smith, a fellow at the Center for Automotive Research at Stanford (CARS), told Ars that the new rules could change how manufacturers proceed with their testing. “The DMV has a really, really difficult task, and I was impressed with the thoughtfulness of their approach,” he said. “I would say that anyone who is reading these documents will have to read very closely.”" Read more » about California approves test of self-driving cars on public roads
"“Criminal law is going to be looking for a guilty mind, a particular mental state — should this person have known better?” Mr. Calo said.
“If you’re not driving the car, it’s going to be difficult.”" “It’s the one headline, ‘machine kills child,’ rather than the 30,000 obituaries we have every year from humans killed on the roads,” said Bryant Walker Smith, a fellow at Stanford University’s Center for Automotive Research." Read more » about When Driverless Cars Break the Law
"Bryant Walker Smith, a fellow at Stanford University’s Center for Automotive Research, said it can take up to six years to design and build a new car. Smith said any self-driving car ready in six years would likely be “limited in terms of capability, availability, or geography.”" Read more » about Google Talking to Auto Makers About Self-Driving Car
"Bryant Walker Smith writes that “commercial sellers’ growing information about, access to, and control over their products, product users, and product uses could significantly expand their point-of-sale and post-sale obligations toward people endangered by these products.”" Read more » about Products Liability and Driverless Cars
For more information visit: http://www.umtri.umich.edu/what-were-doing/events/toyota-speaker-series-...
The University of Michigan Transportation Research Institute and Toyota invite you to attend "Leadership in Transportation: New Perspectives on Safe and Sustainable Transportation," a series of informative and engaging conversations with leaders in transportation. Read more » about A Legal Perspective on Three Misconceptions in Vehicle Automation
For more information and to register to attend please visit: http://www.meetup.com/Silicon-Valley-Autonomous-Vehicle-Enthusiasts/even...
A legal perspective on three (mis)conceptions in vehicle automation, Bryant Walker Smith Read more » about A legal perspective on three (mis)conceptions in vehicle automation
TransOvation is a PDH-granting workshop and program focused on helping transportation design and construction industry professionals (from both the public and private sectors) build innovative thinking into their professional skill set. During this extraordinary, interactive learning event, world-class innovators use real-world examples and technologies to demonstrate approaches that can lead to new markets, increased efficiency, productivity and profit. Read more » about Transovation
“You can look forward to automation as a similar set of local and national tensions and developments and opportunities,” said Bryant Walker Smith. Smith was comparing the early days of broadband and its organic development to what we are seeing with vehicle automation. He brings a unique perspective on this topic, with both a transportation engineering and legal background. Read more at: http://viodi.com/2014/08/15/autonomous-autos-and-the-law/ Read more » about Autonomous Vehicles and the Law
The automobile has proven to be one of the most popular and transformational transport technologies ever. Now, however, slightly more than a century after its invention, there are signs that car use has stabilised or is in decline in many historic markets. Automakers are deploying new technologies they feel meet their customers' requirements but will the industry's historic business model remain relevant for the 21st century? Read more » about Adapting the Vehicle to a New Society: How Will Shifting Attitudes and Vehicle Technology Change the Way We Drive?
View the full video on our YouTube channel.
Lunch Time Discussion with Honorable Rodney Slater on the Opportunities, Challenges and Best Pathways for Successful Transportation Innovation and Policymaking
Bryant Walker Smith, CIS Resident Fellow, moderated this session.
There’s a lot of talk about autonomous control vehicles, or cars that drive themselves. Charles Feldman talked with Stanford Law School expert Bryant Walker Smith to find out more about this futuristic idea that’s already being tested on California roads. Read more » about Driven To Gridlock: Driverless Cars