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Federal Highway Administration Research and Technology
Coordinating, Developing, and Delivering Highway Transportation Innovations

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Publication Number:  FHWA-HRT-13-022    Date:  August 2013
Publication Number: FHWA-HRT-13-022
Date: August 2013


Synthesis of Traveler Choice Research: Improving Modeling Accuracy for Better Transportation Decisionmaking

Conclusions, Recommendations, and Future Research

This review reflects the diversity of travel behavior research. Nevertheless, a number of topics raised in many studies will shape the future of travel behavior research and the way we understand and model the mechanisms of travel behavior. These topics cut across all areas of analysis and understanding, from general knowledge to models and data, as each section cannot be used to draw conclusions by itself. It has been widely accepted that activity-based models are needed to model the complexity of travel demand, and many activity-based models have been implemented. However, most national travel surveys conduct travel diaries of 1 day, which account for neither the details desired to understand short-term behavior nor the extended time period to capture long-term effects.

Topics that should influence the nature of project methodology, data collection, and models include behavior mechanisms, model integration, environmental impacts, and information in new data opportunities and how to use them. These appear in research quite often, but they have not been explored enough and are not ready to be implemented in today’s tools. The lack of general knowledge, difficulty in capturing and measuring behaviors, and complexity in modeling behavior are formidable challenges.



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