Memorial Day Travel

Many people will kick off the Memorial Day Weekend and the summer with a car trip. Last year, AAA Travel said 37.2 million Americans traveled 50 miles or more from home during Memorial Day. Numbers that are expected to increase this year. The University of Texas at Austin has a wide variety of experts available with backgrounds ranging from traffic congestion to autonomous vehicles to transportation planning and policy-making. Please feel free to contact any of the below experts for an interview or for qualified insight on:

If you are seeking expertise on other subjects, please call University Media Relations at 512-471-3151 or consult our general Media Experts Guide.

Autonomous Vehicles

Peter H Stone

Peter H Stone

Professor , Department of Computer Science , College of Natural Sciences
+1 512 471 9796,

Dr. Stone's main research interest is in artificial intelligence. Specially, autonomous vehicles and the technology needed to make intersections and roadways ready for fully autonomous cars. He developed new protocols for cars to coordinate movement through intersections that promise to be dramatically more efficient than traffic signals and stop signs when most of the cars are autonomous. He is actively researching technology that will allow cars to coordinate so finely with one another that cars barely need to decelerate when approaching an intersection (and seldom, if ever, need to stop).  He is an expert in artificial intelligence, multi-agent systems and machine learning.

Media Contact: Christine Sinatra,, 512-471-4641


Chandra R Bhat

Chandra R Bhat

Professor , Department of Civil, Architectural and Environmental Engineering , Cockrell School of Engineering
+1 512 471 4535,

Dr. Bhat conducts mathematical modeling of how people make decisions about their activity and travel choices. He is an expert on evaluating the effectiveness of alternative traffic congestion alleviation strategies such as telecommuting, urban form design to reduce auto dependency, work schedule changes, pricing strategies including tolls, ridesharing incentives, non-motorized travel such as bicycling and walking, and real-time driver information regarding traffic delays. Bhat also analyzes seat belt use and auto accidents and studies the adoption of alternative-fuel vehicles.

Kara  Kockelman

Kara Kockelman

Professor , Department of Civil, Architectural and Environmental Engineering , Cockrell School of Engineering
+1 512 471 0210, +1 512 232 4252,

Dr. Kockelman's primary research interests include the statistical modeling of travel behavior and location choice, the connection between urban form and travel, and urban planning and policy-making She can speak on topics such travel behavior, traffic safety, transportation planning and policy-making.

For more information, contact: University Communications, Office of the President, 512-471-3151.