Ride Sharing: Psychological Factors

by Kenneth J. Dueker, Dir.; Inst. of Urban and Regional Research; Prof., Urban and Regional Planning, and Geography; and Adjunct Prof., Civ. Engrg., Univ. of Iowa, Iowa City, Iowa,
Irwin P. Levin, Research Assoc.; Inst. of Urban and Regional Research, and Prof. of Psychology, Univ. of Iowa, Iowa City, Iowa,
Brent O. Bair, Transportation Planning Coordinator; Oakland County, Mich; formerly, Research Coordinator, Inst. of Urban and Regional Research, Univ. of Iowa, Iowa City, Iowa,

Serial Information: Transportation Engineering Journal of ASCE, 1977, Vol. 103, Issue 6, Pg. 685-692

Document Type: Journal Paper


The conventional automobile transportation system is plagued with increasing congestion, pollution, energy consumption, and costs. These problems diminish the automobile's prime advantage of providing personalized, flexible transportation. Ride sharing — carpooling, vanpooling — can deal directly and effectively with these problems at a minimum cost. However, ride sharing has not become widely accepted. A carpooling attitudinal survey indicates that the two most important deterrents to potential carpoolers are the extra time requirements and the loss of independence. Ongoing research involves the analysis of the commuter decision-making process with regard to their mode choice. Models of experimental psychology are being used to study factors underlying individual preferences. These studies relate carpooling as a mode choice preference to interpersonal factors (i.e., composition of the carpool in terms of sex; prior acquaintanceship of potential riders) as important determinants of carpooling desirability.

Subject Headings: Car pools | Human factors | Automobiles | Traffic congestion | Pollution | Energy consumption | Geomatic surveys | Decision making

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