Workshop on Safer Autonomous Systems (SAS)

Special theme: safety-aware design and validation of autonomous systems

Co-located with DSN 2021

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, this workshop will be held virtually

Scope and goals of the workshop
Autonomous systems have decisional capabilities allowing them to accomplish complex missions in diverse and previously unknown environments. Self-driving cars and unmanned aerial vehicles are emblematic examples of systems behaving with a high degree of autonomy. Beyond these examples, there is also a huge potential for autonomous robots in many different application domains like manufacturing, personal assistance, rescue operation, or agriculture, to name a few.

Despite the numerous possible applications, the widespread deployment of autonomous systems will not happen unless we can assure that these systems will be safe and perform as intended. This workshop aims to present and discuss ongoing research to address the safety challenges. It is organized concerning a European Commission project: the SAS (Safer Autonomous Systems) Innovative training network.

SAS@DSN2021 will be the first dissemination event of the SAS network (a couple of additional ones are planned until the end of 2022). It will feature invited talks by SAS members on the safety-aware design and validation of autonomous systems. Building safety by design involves developing powerful monitoring and adaptation mechanisms that prevent catastrophic events at runtime. Safety-aware validation calls for innovative virtual testing methods, i.e., simulation- and model-based, as physical testing in the field would be too costly, too time-consuming, and possibly even too risky. The workshop will (i) present some achievements by researchers and industrial partners of the network, and (ii) promote exchanges with the audience to discuss the open safety-related issues and the novel ways to address them.


The IEEE/IFIP International Conference on Dependable Systems and Networks (DSN) is the most prestigious international forum for presenting advanced and innovative research results, problem solutions, practices, insights on new challenges in dependable computing and security. The whole spectrum of IT systems and application areas with stringent relevant dependability and security concerns are of interest to DSN.

All aspects of dependable and secure systems and networks are within the scope of DSN, including innovative architectures, protocols, algorithms, models for performance and dependability evaluation, and experimentation and assessment of dependable and secure systems and networks. Authors are invited to submit original papers on research and practice of creating, validating, deploying, and maintaining dependable and secure systems and networks.

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