Takata Foundation research assistance concept
The number of fatalities resulting from road traffic accidents in Japan has, after a 14 consecutive year decline, levelled off. Meanwhile, for the last 8 consecutive years, pedestrians or vulnerable road users have accounted for the largest proportion of these fatalities, and senior citizens are comprising a higher ratio of these deaths than ever before. Overseas, the number of fatalities and injuries from traffic accidents are continuing to rise every year. Traditionally, motor vehicles are used to get us around and to enrich our lives and streamline industries. Therefore, we believe it should be unacceptable for fatalities and injuries to occur. There have been countless technological developments, law reforms, and educational programs aimed at preventing traffic fatalities and injuries, but in order to bring us closer to reducing fatalities and injuries from traffic accidents to zero, we must focus on the human element of the equation. We must adopt measures that don’t allow human error and develop mechanisms that will prevent human error from leading to accidents. At the same time, there should be an increased focus on mitigating injuries and streamlining emergency services in the event that accidents do occur.
Takata Foundation works to provide assistance for the progression of research aimed at the early implementation of such innovations.
Organizations eligible for grants
Postgraduate colleges, universities, technical colleges, public research institutes, public service corporations, incorporated administrative agencies, and NPO (Non Profit Organization), etc. (individuals and companies are not eligible)
Key research criteria for grants by Takata Foundation
Takata Foundation focuses its assistance on research that:
ultimately aims to reduce traffic fatalities and injuries to zero and particularly focuses on measures to reduce human error (research period: one year or several years)
- will be of benefit to public welfare
- uses forward thinking methods and contributes to improving traffic safety in society
- breaks down preconceptions, and is creative original and innovative
- includes interdisciplinary research
- includes exploratory research
- includes non-technical research, such as improvements to social organization and human education
Examples of eligible areas of research
- (1) Research on traffic accident causes which contain a human element
- Field survey of actual accidents with a human element
- Factors causing driver error
- Driver burden and limits of such burden
- Driver awareness
- Analysis of human error
- (2) Research on driver error prevention measures
- Installation of driving assistance devices and their effects
- Accident analysis based on drive recorders, and their effect on accident prevention
- Accident prevention through communication between vehicles and people as well as vehicles and bicycles
- (3) Research on education and knowledge development to support safety in a motorized society
- Effects of experiencing a simulated accident using a driving simulator
- Promotion of driver safety using examples of accidents and potential accidents
- Self-awareness of deterioration of driving ability
- (4) Research for the reduction of physical injury and emergency medical care research
- Emergency medical care systems and medical procedures
- Advancements in passenger restraint devices and pedestrian protection devices
- Medical advancements through injury prediction
- (5) Research on accident prevention through improvement in road infrastructure
- Effect of improvements to road sign/markings and road structure
- Model cities aiming for zero traffic accidents
- (6) Surveys and research on improvements in the drivers license system and the vehicle insurance system
- Identifying people unfit for driving (including dementia sufferers, etc.)
- Effect of penalties on traffic violators Insurance-based traffic safety awareness incentives
- Insurance-based traffic safety awareness incentives
- (7) Surveys and research on prevention of accidents involving the elderly
(8) Surveys and research on prevention of accidents involving pedestrians and cyclists
(9) Surveys and research related to child passenger injury reduction
(10) Surveys and research on ways of assisting or enhancing human sensory functions
(11) Other research related to accident prevention and injury reduction measures
Following a public appeal for applications, beneficiaries are selected by the Takata Foundation Research Committee.
Following its establishment in December 2008, Takata Foundation began accepting applications from 2009, and provided grants to four research projects in its first year.
In fiscal 2010 it received 32 applications for grants and after a rigorous review of applications, Takata Foundation Research Committee selected 8 research projects.
A further 9 were selected in fiscal 2011, 11 in fiscal 2012, 13 in fiscal 2013 and 12 in fiscal 2014.
In May 2010, Takata Foundation held its first research conference to showcase outcomes from projects undertaken through the Foundation’s grant program, and these conferences are now an annual event.
For more information, see the Takata Foundation home page(http://www.takatafound.or.jp/).
In the future, we aim to provide further support for younger researchers, and at the same time broaden our support in other areas such as enhancing traffic safety education, holding research conferences, and promoting awareness programs.