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Encouraging Sustainable Transport Choices in American Households: Results from an Empirically Grounded Agent-Based Model

Listed author(s):
  • Davide Natalini


    (Global Sustainability Institute, Anglia Ruskin University, East Road, Cambridge CB1 1PT, UK)

  • Giangiacomo Bravo


    (Department of Social Studies, Linnaeus University, and Collegio Carlo Alberto, Universitetsplatsen 1, 35252 Växjö, Sweden)

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    The transport sector needs to go through an extended process of decarbonisation to counter the threat of climate change. Unfortunately, the International Energy Agency forecasts an enormous growth in the number of cars and greenhouse gas emissions by 2050. Two issues can thus be identified: (1) the need for a new methodology that could evaluate the policy performances ex-ante and (2) the need for more effective policies. To help address these issues, we developed an Agent-Based Model called Mobility USA aimed at: (1) testing whether this could be an effective approach in analysing ex-ante policy implementation in the transport sector; and (2) evaluating the effects of alternative policy scenarios on commuting behaviours in the USA. Particularly, we tested the effects of two sets of policies, namely market-based and preference-change ones. The model results suggest that this type of agent-based approach will provide a useful tool for testing policy interventions and their effectiveness.

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    Article provided by MDPI, Open Access Journal in its journal Sustainability.

    Volume (Year): 6 (2013)
    Issue (Month): 1 (December)
    Pages: 1-20

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    Handle: RePEc:gam:jsusta:v:6:y:2013:i:1:p:50-69:d:31558
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    1. Joyce Dargay, 2008. "Personal Transport Choice," OECD Journal: General Papers, OECD Publishing, vol. 2008(2), pages 59-93.
    2. Santos, Georgina & Behrendt, Hannah & Teytelboym, Alexander, 2010. "Part II: Policy instruments for sustainable road transport," Research in Transportation Economics, Elsevier, vol. 28(1), pages 46-91.
    3. Flachsland, Christian & Brunner, Steffen & Edenhofer, Ottmar & Creutzig, Felix, 2011. "Climate policies for road transport revisited (II): Closing the policy gap with cap-and-trade," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 39(4), pages 2100-2110, April.
    4. Andrew Dobson, 2007. "Environmental citizenship: towards sustainable development," Sustainable Development, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 15(5), pages 276-285.
    5. Gerard de Jong & Hugh Gunn, 2001. "Recent Evidence on Car Cost and Time Elasticities of Travel Demand in Europe," Journal of Transport Economics and Policy, University of Bath, vol. 35(2), pages 137-160, May.
    6. J. Gary Polhill & Dawn C. Parker & Daniel Brown & Volker Grimm, 2008. "Using the ODD Protocol for Describing Three Agent-Based Social Simulation Models of Land-Use Change," Journal of Artificial Societies and Social Simulation, Journal of Artificial Societies and Social Simulation, vol. 11(2), pages 1-3.
    7. Creutzig, Felix & McGlynn, Emily & Minx, Jan & Edenhofer, Ottmar, 2011. "Climate policies for road transport revisited (I): Evaluation of the current framework," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 39(5), pages 2396-2406, May.
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