"Nudging" Active Travel: A Framework For Behavioral Interventions Using Mobile Technology

Title"Nudging" Active Travel: A Framework For Behavioral Interventions Using Mobile Technology
Publication TypeConference Paper
Year of Publication2014
AuthorsJinhua Zhao, Tim Baird
Conference NameTransportation Research Board 93rd Annual Meeting
PublisherTransportation Research Board
Conference LocationWashington, D.C.
Keywordsbehavioral economics, ICT, mobile apps, randomized controlled trials

Advances in behavioral economics have begun to provide a new toolkit of theories, models, and empirical methods for designing and evaluating policy. While many of these techniques are highly relevant to behavioral problems that planners encounter when consulting with the public, crafting policy and regulations, and promoting sustainable patterns of behavior, it has received only limited attention in the planning and transportation literature. The authors review this literature and present a framework for generating, implementing, and testing the results of different interventions designed to affect users’ travel behavior by delivering behavioral feedback via an activity-tracking smartphone application. The results of this promotional strategy are tested in two pilot projects among university students and “Bike to Work Week” participants in British Columbia and Minnesota. Implications for program evaluation and funding and future directions for research on behavioral interventions are discussed.


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Advanced Mobility Management, Singapore-MIT Alliance for Research and Technology (SMART)

Singapore-MIT Alliance for Research and Technology (SMART), 2016-2020

As part of the Future Urban Mobility (FM) IRG of the Singapore-MIT Alliance for Research and Technology (SMART), the team led by Prof. Zhao combine behavioral science and transportation technology to envision a future urban mobility system for Singapore that integrates public transit, walking and bicycling, shared mobility and autonomous vehicles.  Read More