IDEAS home Printed from
   My bibliography  Save this article

On the Formation of Travel Demand Models and Economic Evaluation Measures of User Benefit


  • H C W L Williams

    (Institute for Transport Studies, University of Leeds, Leeds, LS2 9JT, England)


This paper examines a variety of issues within the context of two main themes: the formation of travel demand models and economic evaluation measures which are mutually consistent within a theory of rational choice; and a consideration of the structure of models which are representations of the trip decision process over several dimensions: location, mode, and route. Random utility theory is invoked to explore both the role and properties of composite costs or index prices in the ‘recursive’ approach to the structuring of travel choice models, and their significance in the economic evaluation problem. It is shown that the specification of these costs must be made very precisely, with respect to the demand model form chosen, in order to retain the underlying assumption that the traveller is an optimal decisionmaker. It is argued that the structure of ‘simultaneous’ models currently in use is inconsistent with the form of utility function assumed to generate those models. Furthermore, it is shown that the ‘simultaneous’ and ‘recursive’ forms are special cases of a more general choice model structure which takes specific account of correlation or ‘commonality’ of trip attributes. A number of applications are discussed in which consistent demand models and perceived user benefit measures are constructed. These include the formation of strategic transport planning models and of models for mixed-mode, multimode, and multiroute systems. The formalism allows definitive answers to be given to a number of problems of current interest in transportation planning, which have been incorrectly or incompletely treated.

Suggested Citation

  • H C W L Williams, 1977. "On the Formation of Travel Demand Models and Economic Evaluation Measures of User Benefit," Environment and Planning A, , vol. 9(3), pages 285-344, March.
  • Handle: RePEc:sae:envira:v:9:y:1977:i:3:p:285-344

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL:
    Download Restriction: no

    More about this item


    Access and download statistics


    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:sae:envira:v:9:y:1977:i:3:p:285-344. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (SAGE Publications). General contact details of provider: .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    We have no references for this item. You can help adding them by using this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.