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Technology, Business Models and Network Structure in the Airline Industry

Author

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  • Xavier Fageda

    () (Department of Economic Policy, Universitat de Barcelona, Avinguda Diagonal 690, 08034 Barcelona, Spain.)

  • Ricardo Flores-Fillol

    (Department of Economics, Universitat Rovira i Virgili, Avinguda de la Universitat 1, 43204 Reus, Spain.)

Abstract

Network airlines have been increasingly focusing their operations on hub airports through the exploitation of connecting traffic, allowing them to take advantage of economies of traffic density, which are unequivocal in the airline industry. Less attention has been devoted to airlines? decisions on point-to-point thin routes, which could be served using different aircraft technologies and different business models. This paper examines, both theoretically and empirically, the impact on airlines ?networks of the two major innovations in the airline industry in the last two decades: the regional jet technology and the low-cost business model. We show that, under certain circumstances, direct services on point-to-point thin routes can be viable and thus airlines may be interested in deviating passengers out of the hub.

Suggested Citation

  • Xavier Fageda & Ricardo Flores-Fillol, 2010. "Technology, Business Models and Network Structure in the Airline Industry," Working Papers XREAP2010-14, Xarxa de Referència en Economia Aplicada (XREAP), revised Dec 2010.
  • Handle: RePEc:xrp:wpaper:xreap2010-14
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Bilotkach, Volodymyr & Fageda, Xavier & Flores-Fillol, Ricardo, 2010. "Scheduled service versus personal transportation: The role of distance," Regional Science and Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 40(1), pages 60-72, January.
    2. Flores-Fillol, Ricardo, 2010. "Congested hubs," Transportation Research Part B: Methodological, Elsevier, vol. 44(3), pages 358-370, March.
    3. Austan Goolsbee & Chad Syverson, 2008. "How Do Incumbents Respond to the Threat of Entry? Evidence from the Major Airlines," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 123(4), pages 1611-1633.
    4. Morrell, Peter, 2005. "Airlines within airlines: An analysis of US network airline responses to Low Cost Carriers," Journal of Air Transport Management, Elsevier, vol. 11(5), pages 303-312.
    5. Charles Boguslaski & Harumi Ito & Darin Lee, 2004. "Entry Patterns in the Southwest Airlines Route System," Review of Industrial Organization, Springer;The Industrial Organization Society, vol. 25(3), pages 317-350, August.
    6. Brueckner, Jan K. & Pai, Vivek, 2009. "Technological innovation in the airline industry: The impact of regional jets," International Journal of Industrial Organization, Elsevier, vol. 27(1), pages 110-120, January.
    7. Dresner, Martin & Windle, Robert & Zhou, Ming, 2002. "Regional jet services: supply and demand," Journal of Air Transport Management, Elsevier, vol. 8(5), pages 267-273.
    8. Jan K. Brueckner, 2004. "Network Structure and Airline Scheduling," Journal of Industrial Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 52(2), pages 291-312, June.
    9. Steven A. Morrison, 2001. "Actual, Adjacent, and Potential Competition Estimating the Full Effect of Southwest Airlines," Journal of Transport Economics and Policy, University of Bath, vol. 35(2), pages 239-256, May.
    10. Douglas W. Caves & Laurits R. Christensen & Michael W. Tretheway, 1984. "Economies of Density versus Economies of Scale: Why Trunk and Local Service Airline Costs Differ," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 15(4), pages 471-489, Winter.
    11. Silke Januszewski Forbes & Mara Lederman, 2009. "Adaptation and Vertical Integration in the Airline Industry," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 99(5), pages 1831-1849, December.
    12. Brueckner, Jan K & Spiller, Pablo T, 1994. "Economies of Traffic Density in the Deregulated Airline Industry," Journal of Law and Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 37(2), pages 379-415, October.
    13. Flores-Fillol, Ricardo, 2009. "Airline competition and network structure," Transportation Research Part B: Methodological, Elsevier, vol. 43(10), pages 966-983, December.
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    Cited by:

    1. Veruska Oppedisano & Gilberto Turati, 2010. "What are the causes of educational inequalities and of their evolution over time in Europe? Evidence from PISA," Working Papers XREAP2010-16, Xarxa de Referència en Economia Aplicada (XREAP), revised Dec 2010.
    2. Lluís Bermúdez & Antoni Ferri & Montserrat Guillén, 2011. "A correlation sensitivity analysis of non-life underwriting risk in solvency capital requirement estimation," Working Papers XREAP2011-12, Xarxa de Referència en Economia Aplicada (XREAP), revised Sep 2011.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    regional jet technology; low-cost business model; point-to-point network; hub-and-spoke network;

    JEL classification:

    • L13 - Industrial Organization - - Market Structure, Firm Strategy, and Market Performance - - - Oligopoly and Other Imperfect Markets
    • L2 - Industrial Organization - - Firm Objectives, Organization, and Behavior
    • L93 - Industrial Organization - - Industry Studies: Transportation and Utilities - - - Air Transportation

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