The gender gap in the acceptance of automated vehicles in Europe


Previous research suggests that there might be a gender gap in the acceptance of automated vehicles (AVs): males are typically found to have a higher intention to use AVs than females, although opposite results have been reported in different countries. The conflicting results have yet to be addressed, and only a few studies have attempted to explain the country-level differences based on quantifiable socio-economic indicators. We investigated the gender gap in the acceptance of AVs (SAE Level 3) using a questionnaire study among 8412 car-drivers in eight European countries as part of the European L3Pilot project. For this study, the gender gap in the acceptance of AVs is defined as the difference in the willingness to use, buy and activate the automated driving function in AVs between men and women. Results showed two distinct realities for Europe: in one group of countries, females were less willing to use AVs than males, while in another group, both males and females had similar acceptance towards AVs with higher ratings overall. These country groups were different in terms of Gross Domestic Product (GDP) per capita and the Gender Equality Index (GEI). The gender gap in the acceptance of AVs was larger in countries with a higher GDP and GEI. The study findings suggest that the gender gap in the acceptance of AVs is not universal, and the countries’ progress in economics and gender equality are related to people's attitudes toward AVs. This finding enhances policy development and planning future transport solutions to ensure that all potential users can benefit from AVs.

Publication DOI:
Divisions: College of Engineering & Physical Sciences > School of Infrastructure and Sustainable Engineering > Engineering Systems and Supply Chain Management
College of Engineering & Physical Sciences
Funding Information: The online survey leading to this study results was funded by the European Commission Horizon 2020 program under the project L3Pilot, grant agreement number 723051.
Additional Information: © 2024 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Ltd. This is an open access article under the CC BY license (
Uncontrolled Keywords: Automated vehicle,Country,Gender gap,Intention to use,Social equality and transport planning,Transportation,Automotive Engineering,Applied Psychology,Civil and Structural Engineering
Publication ISSN: 1369-8478
Last Modified: 22 Apr 2024 07:33
Date Deposited: 23 Jan 2024 09:20
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Related URLs: https://www.sci ... 2383?via%3Dihub (Publisher URL)
http://www.scop ... tnerID=8YFLogxK (Scopus URL)
PURE Output Type: Article
Published Date: 2024-02-01
Published Online Date: 2024-01-18
Accepted Date: 2023-11-07
Authors: Torrao, Guilhermina (ORCID Profile 0000-0001-5614-2209)
Lehtonen, Esko
Innamaa, Satu



Version: Published Version

License: Creative Commons Attribution

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