It is a privilege and pleasure to lead the Institute of Transportation Studies (ITS), which is UC Berkeley’s transportation nucleus. Collectively, our faculty, research centers, projects, programs, initiatives, groups, seminars, alumni, and students have made a permanent impact on the mobility sector. Numerous technologies now in common use were born here, including bridge-ramp metering schemes in the 1970s, platooned and automated cars in the 1990s, and GPS-enabled traffic information smartphone apps in the 2000s.
Today, our numerous, increasingly interwoven fields of study address contemporary challenges — safety, energy consumption, an aging infrastructure, and a lack of reliability, resilience, and sustainability — in our systems. As an institution that spans nine departments and four colleges within UC Berkeley and two divisions at the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, ITS is a unique environment where the entire pipeline from science and technology inception to deployment can be brought to bear on these challenges, working directly with transportation practitioners and the worlds of policy and governance in which they must function. Our researchers work in a wide range of fields, including robotics and machine learning, behavioral economics, policy, and urban planning. To effectively harness that expertise, our plan for the future focuses on four growth areas that will allow us to advance the knowledge base in key fields such as self-driving cars, airspace governance for the coming drone revolution, and a clean-energy infrastructure. With our mission of service to the state of California, and with our San Francisco Bay Area location — ground zero for the extraordinary data-rich, technologically advanced era in which we live — ITS aims to be the inventor of the smart cities of tomorrow, contributing to an always more efficient and sustainable transportation system.
Alexandre M. Bayen
Director, Institute of Transportation Studies
Liao-Cho Innovation Chair, College of Engineering Professor of Civil and Environmental Engineering
Professor of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science