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Stantec invests in dRISK to advance autonomous vehicle adoption and safe operation

Investment will help accelerate the safe deployment of autonomous vehicles in any environment


Stantec, a global leader in sustainable design and engineering, is investing in dRISK, an Artificial Intelligence (AI) and software developer working to improve the efficiency and safety of autonomous vehicles (AV). Stantec’s commitment is part of £1.7 million (US $2.2 million) in capital investment led by Foresight Williams Technologies and will further deepen the strategic partnership between Stantec and dRISK. As Stantec continues to enhance its commitment to bringing AV solutions to communities everywhere, the partnership addresses the industry need for AV developers to train vehicles on how to respond to low-frequency, high-risk events.

For municipalities, companies and agencies looking to deploy AV technology, it is critical to fully understand the potential operating risks for AVs. By employing dRISK’s AI technology, they can properly map out risks in any operating environment and mandate the ability to respond to those risks. A proper understanding of the risk and response of operating AVs will help speed up the safe adoption of the technology in different types of communities.

“Our commitment to safety is exemplified by this investment in dRISK”, said Corey Clothier, Director of Stantec GenerationAV®. “We’re looking forward to helping AV developers and communities understand and address their operational design domain risk and accelerate the adoption of AV technology.”

The investment, led by Stantec’s Innovation Office, is part of a mandate to identify and incubate unique and competitive commercial technologies. The seed-plus funding will provide an equity position for Stantec, intended to expand dRISK’s capabilities to develop the ultimate driver’s test for self-driving cars, an initiative from the UK government to speed the approval of self-driving cars on UK roads.

Despite their sophistication, AVs continue to uncover challenging traffic situations, called edge cases—the countless high-risk scenarios that are individually unlikely, but together make up all the risk on the road. Better mapping those risk scenarios will allow for the safe planning of AV operations and infrastructure. Together, Stantec GenerationAV and dRISK have already created the first operational design domain risk assessment that is based on quantitative data, which is critical to ensuring a feasible and safe operating environment.

“AVs aren’t safe enough to be commercially viable – not yet, anyway” said Chess Stetson, Chief Executive Officer of dRISK, “But by training AVs to deal with a vastly greater variety of scenarios and helping communities prepare for their arrival, we can realize the vision of greater road safety we’re all striving for.”

Stantec’s partnership with dRISK is a progression of the firm’s commitment to accelerate the widespread adoption of AV. In 2020, Stantec created GenerationAV to educate the marketplace, engage municipalities and developers, and advance autonomous mobility in the built environment.

Learn more about Stantec GenerationAV and dRISK.

About dRISK
Using dRISK for retraining, autonomous vehicles can detect and contend with high-risk scenarios 6x sooner and with 2x greater accuracy. dRISK has built a taxonomy of edge cases derived from massive and heterogeneous data focused on millions of hours of CCTV footage from high-risk intersections, full-text accident reporting, and extensive expert input from both transportation specialists and NASA experts in failure mode analysis. Integration is easy, and data can be delivered exclusively for perception retraining on fully annotated simulated and real-life data, or for full-stack AV risk assessment with hardware in the loop. dRISK's customers include top-tier AV developers, as well as the world's largest insurers, transport authorities and fleets.

dRISK leads the D-RISK consortium who were awarded £3.6M by the UK Centre for Connected and Autonomous Vehicles to build a comprehensive AV testing solution. dRISK is part of Nvidia Inception and Intel Ignite.

About Stantec
Communities are fundamental. Whether around the corner or across the globe, they provide a foundation, a sense of place and of belonging. That's why at Stantec, we always design with community in mind.

We care about the communities we serve—because they're our communities too. This allows us to assess what's needed and connect our expertise, to appreciate nuances and envision what's never been considered, to bring together diverse perspectives so we can collaborate toward a shared success.

We're designers, engineers, scientists, and project managers, innovating together at the intersection of community, creativity, and client relationships. Balancing these priorities results in projects that advance the quality of life in communities across the globe.

Stantec trades on the TSX and the NYSE under the symbol STN. 

Media Contact                                   
Colin Nekolaichuk
Stantec Media Relations
Ph: (437) 225-6384

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