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'Complacent Car Addicts' or 'Aspiring Environmentalists'? Identifying travel behaviour segments using attitude theory

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  • Anable, Jillian

Abstract

Using an expanded version of a psychological theory of attitude-behaviour relations, namely the theory of planned behaviour (TPB), scores on factor analysed multi-dimensional attitude statements were used to segment a population of day trip travellers into potential 'mode switchers' using cluster analysis. Six distinct psychographic groups were extracted, each with varying degrees of mode switching potential. Each group represents a unique combination of preferences, worldviews and attitudes, indicating that different groups need to be serviced in different ways to optimise the chance of influencing mode choice behaviour. Socio-demographic factors had little bearing on the travel profiles of the segments, suggesting that attitudes largely cut across personal characteristics. The evidence clearly shows that the same behaviour can take place for different reasons and that the same attitudes can lead to different behaviours. The paper asserts that commonly used a priori classifications used to segment populations based on demographic variables or simple behavioural measures may oversimplify the structure of the market. Cluster analysis is rarely used in studies of travel behaviour but this study demonstrates its utility in providing a way of extracting naturally occurring, relatively homogenous and meaningful groups to be used in designing targeted hard and 'soft' transport policies.

Suggested Citation

  • Anable, Jillian, 2005. "'Complacent Car Addicts' or 'Aspiring Environmentalists'? Identifying travel behaviour segments using attitude theory," Transport Policy, Elsevier, vol. 12(1), pages 65-78, January.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:trapol:v:12:y:2005:i:1:p:65-78
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    1. Ajzen, Icek, 1991. "The theory of planned behavior," Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, Elsevier, vol. 50(2), pages 179-211, December.
    2. Curtis, Carey & Headicar, Peter, 1997. "Targeting travel awareness campaigns : Which individuals are more likely to switch from car to other transport for the journey to work?," Transport Policy, Elsevier, vol. 4(1), pages 57-65, January.
    3. Jensen, Mette, 1999. "Passion and heart in transport -- a sociological analysis on transport behaviour," Transport Policy, Elsevier, vol. 6(1), pages 19-33, January.
    4. Tertoolen, Gerard & van Kreveld, Dik & Verstraten, Ben, 1998. "Psychological resistance against attempts to reduce private car use," Transportation Research Part A: Policy and Practice, Elsevier, vol. 32(3), pages 171-181, April.
    5. Stradling, S. G. & Meadows, M. L. & Beatty, S., 2000. "Helping drivers out of their cars Integrating transport policy and social psychology for sustainable change," Transport Policy, Elsevier, vol. 7(3), pages 207-215, July.
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