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Sustainable Mobility Policy Analysis Using Hybrid Choice Models: Is It the Right Choice?

Gustavo García-Melero (), Rubén Sainz-González (), Pablo Coto-Millán () and Alejandra Valencia-Vásquez ()
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Gustavo García-Melero: Escuela de Ingeniería de Transporte, Pontificia Universidad Católica de Valparaíso, Valparaíso 2340025, Chile
Rubén Sainz-González: Departamento de Economía, Universidad de Cantabria, 39005 Santander, Spain
Pablo Coto-Millán: Departamento de Economía, Universidad de Cantabria, 39005 Santander, Spain
Alejandra Valencia-Vásquez: Escuela de Ingeniería de Transporte, Pontificia Universidad Católica de Valparaíso, Valparaíso 2340025, Chile

Sustainability, 2021, vol. 13, issue 5, 1-16

Abstract: In recent years, sustainable mobility policy analysis has used Hybrid Choice Models (HCM) by incorporating latent variables in the mode choice models. However, the impact on policy analysis outcomes has not yet been determined with certainty. This paper aims to measure the effect of HCM on sustainable mobility policy analysis compared to traditional models without latent variables. To this end, we performed mode choice research in the city of Santander, Spain. We identified two latent variables—Safety and Comfort—and incorporated them as explanatory variables in the HCM. Later, we conducted a sensitivity study for sustainable mobility policy analysis by simulating different policy scenarios. We found that the HCM amplified the impact of sustainable mobility policies on the modal shares, and provided an excessive reaction in the individuals’ travel behavior. Thus, the HCM overrated the impact of sustainable mobility policies on the modal switch. Likewise, for all of the mode choice models, policies that promoted public transportation were more effective in increasing bus modal shares than those that penalized private vehicles. In short, we concluded that sustainable mobility policy analysis should use HCM prudently, and should not set them as the best models beforehand.

Keywords: sustainable mobility; policy analysis; hybrid choice models; latent variables; mode choice (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: O13 Q Q0 Q2 Q3 Q5 Q56 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2021
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