A year in review 2022: a look back at the penultimate year of our programme

News | Posted on Friday 3 February 2023

Our Year in review 2022 considers how our assuring autonomy community are guiding the safe development of autonomous systems across the globe

Annual review 2022 front cover image

Read the Year in review 2022

Collaboration has always been at the heart of our assuring autonomy work. The challenges of assuring the safety of autonomous systems are vast, with new ones emerging as we edge closer to wide deployment. We must work together to ensure their safe introduction and operation.

Our multidisciplinary approach runs through all of our work and is celebrated by our collaborators. We bring the right people together at the right time. In doing so, we help to bring safety to the forefront of technology development.

In 2022 we grew our international community. New partners have helped us engage with the public, influence upcoming standards, and find new funding to answer some of the emerging challenges. We’ve also worked with partners to validate and refine our guidance.

We moved into our new home, the Institute for Safe Autonomy at the University of York, and have been delighted to welcome existing and new partners to this fantastic facility. We have also brought additional members of the team on board, including new research associates as well as several postgraduate researchers and interns.

Our work with regulators has progressed, with bespoke training for two regulatory organisations, and more planned for next year. In December we brought together over 40 staff from 11 different regulatory and standards organisations for the first in a series of workshops that will help us identify common challenges of assuring and regulating AI- and ML-based systems. By identifying these areas of overlap we will enable regulators to make greater progress by working together. This work will be developed at follow-on workshops in 2023.

This year’s achievements, and those of previous years, have been part of an evaluation by independent consultants, considering our impact to date. Our community, our expertise, our multidisciplinary approach, and our influence on safety practices and skills are elements we’re especially proud of. We’ve also set the conditions for more change and look forward to seeing this impact in the future.

So, as we move out of our busiest year yet and into the final year of our current Programme, we are exploring new ventures and considering how we best tackle the challenges associated with the safe operation of autonomous systems and the wider societal impacts of their introduction. We’ve delivered some notable achievements this year and we’re excited by what is to come.

Professor John McDermid OBE FREng
Programme Director