Paying attention behind the wheel: a framework for studying the role of attention in driving
Theoretical Issues in Ergonomics Science
Driver inattention is thought to cause many automobile crashes. However, the research on attention is fragmented, and the applied research on driving and attention is further split between three largely independent traditions: the experimental research, the differential crash rate research, and the automation research. The goal of this review is to provide a conceptual framework to unify the research-a framework based on the combination of two fundamental dimensions of attentional selection:
... ection with and without conscious awareness (controlled and automatic), and selection by innate and acquired cognitive mechanisms (exogenous and endogenous). When applied to studies chosen to represent a broad range within the experimental literature, it reveals links between a variety of factors, including inexperience, inebriation, distracting stimuli, heads-up displays, fatigue, rumination, and secondary tasks such as phone conversations. This framework also has clear implications for the differential crash literature and the study of automated systems that support or replace functions of the driver. We conclude that driving research and policy could benefit from consideration of the different modes of attentional selection insofar as they integrate literatures, reveal directions for future research, and predict the effectiveness of interventions for crash-prevention.