Pittsburgh could become leader in autonomy sector, study says

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Pittsburgh has the potential to become a major player in the autonomy sector’s global market, according to a study by Regional Industrial Development Corporation (RIDC) and the Greater Pittsburgh Chamber of Commerce, but action is needed to compete against other regions.

The autonomous mobile systems is forecasted to become a more than $1 trillion global market by 2026. A region that captures 1 percent of that global market growth is predicted to experience a $10 billion impact and create 5,000 jobs.

Pittsburgh’s autonomy sector totals an estimated more than $126.7 million in federal tax revenues, $34.7 million in state and local tax revenues, $651 million in labor income, and more than 6,300 direct jobs, and 8,604 indirect jobs.

Pittsburgh is at risk from insufficient support for the sector, a challenging regulatory environment, and competition from other regions, the report said. This could be offset by the creation of demonstration and testing infrastructure assets; expanding the talent pipeline; developing a regional autonomous industry supply chain; better coordinating the region’s innovation ecosystem assets; establishing a state-level autonomy program to position the region for future growth; and advancing the identity of the region as a leading autonomous systems hub.

The report took nine months to complete.