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Information and Usage of Congestible Facilities Under Free Access

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  • Richard Arnott

Abstract

We investigate the effect of information about congestion on participation and time-of-use decisions in a free-access delay system subject to predictable and unpredictable fluctuations in capacity and demand intensity. Expected welfare is greater with perfect than with zero information, while optimal design capacity is greater if and only if demand elasticity is less than one. Imperfect information can reduce welfare by inducting concentration in the arrival time of users at the facility. This suggests that route guidance systems for automobile travel and other public information dissemination schemes must be designed and implemented with care.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Northwestern University, Center for Mathematical Studies in Economics and Management Science in its series Discussion Papers with number 974.

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Date of creation: Jan 1992
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Handle: RePEc:nwu:cmsems:974

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Postal: Center for Mathematical Studies in Economics and Management Science, Northwestern University, 580 Jacobs Center, 2001 Sheridan Road, Evanston, IL 60208-2014
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Web page: http://www.kellogg.northwestern.edu/research/math/
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