Day-to-day needs-based activity-travel dynamics and equilibria in multi-state supernetworks

P. Liu, F. Liao (Corresponding author), Qiong Tian (Corresponding author), Hai Jun Huang, H.J.P. Timmermans

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This study proposes a new framework for studying activity-travel dynamics in multi-state supernetworks based on a needs-based theory. The framework postulates that temporal fluctuations in human needs are the source of dynamically generated activities, which in turn are manifested in the choice of day-to-day activity-travel patterns (ATPs) and dynamics in day-to-day traffic. Specifically, the utility of fulfilling a daily ATP is determined jointly by the degree of satisfying the disaggregate needs and the aggregate effects of traffic conditions when conducting the ATP. The needs are updated after completing the activities and so is the utility of fulfilling the ATP, which means that conducting the same ATP on two consecutive days is likely to derive different utilities. Thus, the choice of a daily ATP is determined not only by the needs based on past ATP choices but also on current traffic conditions and usage of facilities. We formulate these dynamics in terms of an activity-travel adjustment process, through which the proposed needs-based activity-travel dynamic system converges to a steady state, coinciding with the Wardropian user equilibrium and the equivalent mixed-strategy Nash equilibrium. This formalism integrates activity generation, activity-travel scheduling, and traffic flow evolution, and offers appealing explanations for day-to-day traffic dynamics and equilibria.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)503-523
Number of pages21
JournalTransportation Research Procedia
Publication statusPublished - 2019
Event23rd International Symposium on Transportation and Traffic Theory - Lausanne , Switzerland
Duration: 24 Jul 201926 Jul 2019

Bibliographical note

Part of special issue:
Journal of Transportation and Traffic Theory
Edited by Nikolas Geroliminis, Ludovic Leclercq


  • Activity-travel
  • Day-to-day dynamics
  • Equilibria
  • Multi-state supernetwork
  • Need


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