Active school travel: homogeneity or heterogeneity? That is the question

To explain and predict active school travel (AST), most studies have not investigated to what extent considering taste heterogeneity is an important influence on AST share. The main aim of the present study was to evaluate whether considering unobserved taste heterogeneity through mixed logit models – including random coefficient and random coefficient analysis (RCA) – materially improves/influences the AST prediction compared to a simpler model – the multinomial logit (MNL) model. The database comprises 735 valid observations. The results show that, with a 10% increase in perceived walking time to school, the MNL model predicts that the AST share would decrease by 7.8% (from 18.9% to 17.4%) while the RCA model predicts that it would decrease by 8.5% (from 18.9% to 17.3%). Thus, the expected share of AST is overestimated by MNL by one-tenth of a percentage point. Although there might be random taste variations around perceived distance to school, it seems the other important policy-sensitive variables, such as safety perception, homogeneously impacts on the AST share across households with different socioeconomic and built environment characteristics. The empirical assessment suggests that considering taste heterogeneity does not necessarily improve the accuracy of analysis for the aggregate share of the AST concerning policy-sensitive variables.

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  • English

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  • Accession Number: 01746581
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Files: TRIS
  • Created Date: Jun 29 2020 3:01PM