Student consulting team examines impact of autonomous vehicles on insurance industry

This semester, students in Associate Professor Yoo-Seong Song's Applied Business Research class (IS 540) worked with COUNTRY Financial at the Research Park on a project examining the impact of autonomous vehicles and smart cities on the insurance industry. The student consulting team's research provided the company with a glimpse of how the additional liability autonomous vehicles bring would change the landscape of the insurance industry.

"We did extensive competitor research to see how the various players in the auto insurance market are tackling these issues," said Simran Wig, who served as the team's project manager. "Our recommendations to COUNTRY Financial were a series of steps based on a 10-year timeline and multiple phases, suggesting the best possible ways to adapt to the dynamically changing property and casualty insurance industry with autonomous vehicles and smart cities."

BIG student consulting team and COUNTRY Financial
Nishi Mehta, Devanshi Bhatt, Julia Hart, Jim Jacobs, Saurav Yadav, Simran Wig, Dhruman Shah, and Srikanth Pendyala

The Impact of Autonomous Vehicles and Smart Cities on the Insurance Industry project team consisted of Wig, Saurav Yadav (senior manager), Srikanth Pendyala (senior consultant), and consultants Devanshi Bhatt, Dhruman Shah, and Nishi Mehta. The team had the opportunity to present its findings to Jim Jacobs, CEO of COUNTRY Financial.

"Mr. Jacobs was quite impressed with our research and had amazing insights for us, which helped us in building our final recommendations. Our interaction with the CEO and his team was an enriching one, and we learned a lot from this experiential learning process," Yadav said.

Julia Hart, site leader for the COUNTRY Financial DigitaLab, was likewise impressed with the student consulting team.

"It was very clear that they spent a lot of time researching and analyzing trends and forecasts for autonomous vehicles and connected cities in the insurance industry," Hart said. "Additionally, the team was very dependable and always came to meetings prepared and able to answer without hesitation any question asked about the topic. I enjoyed working with the team and wish them continued success."

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