The author suggests that travel models serve several purposes and that one cannot expect a single model - no matter how complicated and comprehensive - to serve all purposes at once. It is considered that there are generally three roles they must serve, (1) to assist in understanding and explaining behaviour, (2) to assist with policy formation and (3) to provide accurate prediction for design and evaluation. The types of model are discussed, and it is considered that realistic models of travel choice must be based on an accurate description and hence characterisation of behaviour. The method used in the transport studies unit (TSU) is described as a scientific method moving from observations through assumptions to theories and, finally, to testing. The TSU's present work on travel choice behaviour is described as taking two forms: the first has acquired empirical data within an activity framework (i.e. Information on the spatial and temporal context of household activity patterns, making travel an explicit mechanism for substituting activities in space); the second has utilized standard household travel diaries and has concentrated on travel. This approach is discussed in relation to the pragmatic, the mathematical and the interactive ways of developing a model of travel choice. It is considered that the way ahead does not lie in single-minded concentration on ever more complicated macro-models, but that there must be variety with simple, umpretentious models akin to the TSU's interactive travel simulator known as hats (household activity-travel simulator) to increase understanding and to provide insights for policy, while more complicated mathematical models are developed for physical planning and design. /TRRL/

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  • Corporate Authors:

    Printerhall Limited

    29 Newmart Street
    London W1P 3PE,   England 
  • Authors:
    • Heggie, I G
  • Publication Date: 1977-12

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Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 00177349
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Source Agency: Transport and Road Research Laboratory (TRRL)
  • Files: ITRD, TRIS
  • Created Date: Sep 14 1978 12:00AM