The study design of UDRIVE: the naturalistic driving study across Europe for cars, trucks and scooters

Barnard, Y; Utesch, F.; Nes, N. van; Eenink, R.; Baumann, M.


UDRIVE is the first large-scale European Naturalistic Driving Study on cars, trucks and powered two-wheelers. The acronym stands for “European naturalistic Driving and Riding for Infrastructure & Vehicle safety and Environment”. The purpose of the study is to gain a better understanding of what happens on the road in everyday traffic situations.


The paper describes Naturalistic Driving Studies, a method which provides insight into the actual real-world behaviour of road users, unaffected by experimental conditions and related biases. Naturalistic driving can be defined as a study undertaken to provide insight into driver behaviour during everyday trips by recording details of the driver, the vehicle and the surroundings through unobtrusive data gathering equipment and without experimental control. Data collection will take place in six EU Member States.


Road User Behaviour will be studied with a focus on both safety and environment. The UDRIVE project follows the steps of the FESTA-V methodology, which was originally designed for Field Operational Tests.


Defining research questions forms the basis of the study design and the specification of the recording equipment. Both will be described in this paper. Although the project has just started collecting data from drivers, we consider the process of designing the study as a major result which may help other initiatives to set up similar studies.

Published in
European Transport Research Review
8 (14)

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