A reference-dependent user equilibrium model for activity-travel scheduling

Q. Li, F. Liao, H.J.P. Timmermans, J. Zhou

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)
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Existing user equilibrium models of activity-travel scheduling generally fall short in representing travelers’ decision-making processes. The majority have either implicitly or explicitly assumed that travelers follow the principle of utility maximization. This assumption ignores the fact that individuals may be loss–averse when making activity-travel decisions. Allowing for the situation that travelers possess accurate information of the urban-transportation system due to modern technologies, studies on reference-dependent decision-making under near-perfect information are receiving increasing attention. In view of traveler heterogeneity, individuals can be divided into multiple classes according to their reference points. In this paper, we propose a reference-dependent multi-class user equilibrium model for activity-travel scheduling, which can be reformulated as a variational inequality problem. Moreover, comparative analyses are conducted on the equilibrium states between utility-maximization (no reference) and reference-dependency of exogenous and endogenous references. A numerical example regarding combined departure-time and mode choice for commuting is conducted to illustrate the proposed model. The simulated results indicate that reference points and loss aversion attitudes have significant effects on the choice of departure time and mode.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1061–1077
Number of pages17
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 2016


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