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A comparison of two alternative behavioral choice mechanisms for household auto ownership decisions


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  • Bhat, Chandra R.
  • Pulugurta, Vamsi
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    Auto ownership modeling plays an important role in travel demand analysis because it is a key determinant of the travel behavior of individuals and households. Discrete-choice auto ownership models use either an ordered-response choice mechanism or an unordered-response choice mechanism. The ordered-response mechanism is based on the hypothesis that an uni-dimensional continuous latent auto ownership propensity index determines the level of car ownership. The unordered-response mechanism is based on the Random Utility Maximization principle. This paper presents the underlying theoretical structures, and identifies the advantages and disadvantages, of the two alternative response mechanisms. The paper also compares the ordered-response mechanism (represented by the ordered-response logit model) and the unordered-response mechanism (represented by the multinomial logit model) empirically using several data sets. This comparative analysis offers strong evidence that the appropriate choice mechanism is the unordered-response structure. As a general guideline, auto ownership modeling must be pursued using the unordered-response class of models (such as the multinomial logit or probit model) and not using the ordered-response class of models (such as the ordered-response logit or probit).

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    Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Transportation Research Part B: Methodological.

    Volume (Year): 32 (1998)
    Issue (Month): 1 (January)
    Pages: 61-75

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    Handle: RePEc:eee:transb:v:32:y:1998:i:1:p:61-75

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    1. Uncles, Mark D., 1987. "A beta-logistic model of mode choice: Goodness of fit and intertemporal dependence," Transportation Research Part B: Methodological, Elsevier, vol. 21(3), pages 195-205, June.
    2. Meurs, Henk, 1990. "Trip generation models with permanent unobserved effects," Transportation Research Part B: Methodological, Elsevier, vol. 24(2), pages 145-158, April.
    3. Golob, Thomas F., 1990. "The Dynamics of Household Travel Time Expenditures and Car Ownership Decisions," University of California Transportation Center, Working Papers qt2t18b4q9, University of California Transportation Center.
    4. Bhat, Chandra R. & Koppelman, Frank S., 1993. "An endogenous switching simultaneous equation system of employment, income, and car ownership," Transportation Research Part A: Policy and Practice, Elsevier, vol. 27(6), pages 447-459, November.
    5. Golob, Thomas F., 1990. "The Dynamics of Household Travel Time Expenditures and Car Ownership Decisions," University of California Transportation Center, Working Papers qt1676t0bp, University of California Transportation Center.
    6. Han, Aaron & Hausman, Jerry A, 1990. "Flexible Parametric Estimation of Duration and Competing Risk Models," Journal of Applied Econometrics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 5(1), pages 1-28, January-M.
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