Research & reports

Title: Driving into the Sunset: Supporting Cognitive Functioning in Older Drivers

Organisation: Brunel University (Ergonomics Research Group)
Date uploaded: 13th June 2012
Date published/launched: March 2011

This paper reviews the respective literature on cognitive neuropsychology and ergonomics to suggest a previously unexplored synergy between these two fields.

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The rise in the ageing driver population presents society with a significant challenge — how to maintain safety and mobility on the roads. On the one hand older drivers pose a higher risk of an at-fault accident on a mile-for-mile basis; on the other, independent mobility is a significant marker of quality of life in ageing.

This paper reviews the respective literature on cognitive neuropsychology and ergonomics to suggest a previously unexplored synergy between these two fields. It argues that this conceptual overlap can form the basis for future solutions to what has been called “the older driver problem". Such solutions could be found in a range of emerging driver assistance technologies offered by vehicle manufacturers, which have the potential to compensate for the specific cognitive decrements associated with ageing that are related to driving.

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Dr. Mark Young
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