Towards a Transport Therapy:

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Nov 30, 2013 (3 years and 10 months ago)

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American Society for Cybernetics 2004 Conference: The Well Being of Systems

Towards a Transport Therapy:

Christopher D. Congleton M.S.

Institute of Transportation Studies;
University of California, Davis

August 2004

Reflexivity in

Travel Behavior

Communication and

American Society for Cybernetics 2004 Conference: The Well Being of Systems

What are we talking about?

Automobility
: as the personal (and commercial)
mobility afforded by the democratization of access to
systems that allow individuals to move in a self
-
directed
fashion through the space and time of their daily lives

(Kurani, Turrentine, Heffner, and Congleton 2003)

Transport
: as the
spatiotemporal mediation of
people and goods

American Society for Cybernetics 2004 Conference: The Well Being of Systems

USA Transport in Context


The Legacy of the System of
Interstate and Defense Highways


(1956 Legislation)


Vehicle Mass Marketing:


from 0 to 220 million in 100 years



Geopolitics of
Petroleum Supply Chains



Postwar Boomer
Suburban Sprawl

American Society for Cybernetics 2004 Conference: The Well Being of Systems

American Society for Cybernetics 2004 Conference: The Well Being of Systems

Pathologies and Disease (Disturbances?) in Transport
Systems and the Need for Collective Therapies



Marginalization of segments of the population without
auto access (and therefore access to the benefits of
automobility)


Marginalization of transport alternatives to the auto


Contributor of planetary emissions of CO
2

and criteria
pollutants


Widespread dependence on a single fuel


Current positive feedback in transport


Development Patterns, Land Use, and Travel Behavior


An Arms Race for Soccer Moms


Congestion and Road Expansion


Sprawl and Big Box retailing

American Society for Cybernetics 2004 Conference: The Well Being of Systems

Carbon Dioxide Emissions and the
Construction of a Collective Thermostat

American Society for Cybernetics 2004 Conference: The Well Being of Systems

Transport Therapy?


Treatment of Pathology
and/or Disease through
communication and
new habits


Or Letting Go? (if there
can be no control)


Designing and Tuning
Collective Thermostats:


Is there greater
stability in the variety of
collective self
-
regulation?


American Society for Cybernetics 2004 Conference: The Well Being of Systems

Closing the Loop


My role as I see it is to
systematically remove
constraints in the
collective construction of
expanding choice sets
embodying increased
collective benefits


Collective Benefits
:

a
subset of public goods
that no one gets unless
many people act in
concert to acquire them.
Clean air, reduced risk of
global climate change,
and peace as collective
benefits

no single
consumer can buy them.

(Kurani and Turrentine, 2002)


Envisioning

and Designing

Informing

Listening

American Society for Cybernetics 2004 Conference: The Well Being of Systems

A Simple Thesis


People construct meaning regarding their
behavior through their communication and
reflection upon it.


Further, such communication and reflection can
be purposeful, transformative, and collaborative.


In pursuing solutions to transport problems, vast
potential is available for collaborative design of
household lifestyles in the short
-
term, and
transport technologies and infrastructure in the
long
-
term through such practices.

American Society for Cybernetics 2004 Conference: The Well Being of Systems

Lifestyle and Identity


Kurani and Turrentine have focused on a portion
of Giddens’ theory they call theories of
“reflexively organized lifestyle”


(Kurani and Turrentine 1997)


They use a notion of
lifestyle

defined by
Giddens as:


“…a more or less integrated set of practices
which an individual embraces…because they
give material to a particular narrative of self
identity…it is ‘adopted’ rather than ‘handed
down.’ Lifestyles are routinized practices, the
routines incorporated into habits of dress, eating,
modes of acting, and favored milieu for
encountering others; but the routines followed
are reflexively open to change in light of the
mobile nature of self identity.”
(Giddens, 1991)

American Society for Cybernetics 2004 Conference: The Well Being of Systems

Reflexivity


Giddens (1984)

defines
reflexivity

as “…not
merely as ‘self conscious’ but as the monitored
character of the ongoing flow of social life. To be
a human being is to be a purposive agent, who
both has reasons for his or her activities and is
able, if asked, to elaborate discursively upon
those reasons…”


This process of reflexive conversation is the
starting point for a household’s construction of
subsets of activity spaces accessible by different
modes. Time
-
space slices of life, referred to as
lifestyle sectors
, are enacted in a
locale,

a
space defined by its properties as a setting for
social interaction.

American Society for Cybernetics 2004 Conference: The Well Being of Systems

Activity Analysis


Activity analysis sees travel as a derived demand with
daily and multi
-
day patterns, related to and derived
from differences in lifestyle and activity participation
across a population
(Jones, et al, 1990)
.


Households and members are the behavioral units
under study, and travel is derived from changes of
activity type that necessitate a change in activity
location.


Time and Space Mapping
(Hägerstrand, 1970)


Interdependencies and Constraints that define activity
choices
(Ibid.)


Capability Constraints


Coupling Constraints


Authority Constraints

American Society for Cybernetics 2004 Conference: The Well Being of Systems

Hypothetical Situation Analysis


Learning Processes are critical in the spread of
new technologies or practices


Information acquisition


Adaptive response (to limitations)


Optimization (of benefits)


Interactive Interviews


Using charts of previous travel behavior (ex: one
week travel diary),


Households simulate the substitution of new
technologies for completing previous trips, and


Compare the impact of new technologies in the
context of previous experiences

American Society for Cybernetics 2004 Conference: The Well Being of Systems

Does this technique work?


Don’t know yet…


We know people can form new preferences and
beliefs, but what about changing behavior?



Because our research has been hypothetical,
technologies have not been available in the
market, and we haven’t been able to evaluate
behavioral changes


In
-
home interviews with “trained experts” are
great for researching hypothetical markets, but
are expensive and time consuming if we imagine
them as a means for widespread education and
behavioral change

American Society for Cybernetics 2004 Conference: The Well Being of Systems

Online Reflexive Tools for Consumer/Citizens


What’s the minimum effort that can be applied to
create a reflexive process for consumers in the real
world


and where should it be placed in their
decision process?


Could it propagate freely through social networks?


If we create an educational and reflexive online tool
that can save people time and money and is easy to
use, will they pass it on to friends and transform their
lives?



Would you?

American Society for Cybernetics 2004 Conference: The Well Being of Systems

Other Current and Future Projects


Traveling through Europe for the first time(!) through September

filming
transport alternatives and Euro
-
transport professional's

perspectives on
transport for use in a film on Sprawl.


Teaching an engineering course in the Fall entitled “Human Hybrid Electric
Vehicle Design for Low
-
speed Lightweight Mode Networks”


Publications in Process


A qualified quantification of

limited range vehicle

markets in the U.S.


An evolutionary game
-
theoretical paper on the size and safety arms race in vehicle
types


A policy analysis piece on the California ZEV mandate


Upcoming Dissertation: Study of consumer
-
citizen responses to

a Dual
Transportation Infrastructured Town


initially entailing

focus groups, interviews,

simulated LLM

network travel diaries,

ride
and drive clinics

of existing

LLM exemplars, and construction of a cost/benefit
analysis comparison

of Passtown vs suburbia.


Observations and conclusions from this first phase

would then be used to make


a
research film

on sprawl, which would be disseminated with before and after surveys
to residents of these various towns. Along with a control treatment, I would study
changes in respondents' preferences for housing and mode options, as well as the
flow of the research instrument through respondents' social networks in order to
construct housing and mode market segments.

American Society for Cybernetics 2004 Conference: The Well Being of Systems

References


Giddens, A. 1984. The Constitution of Society: Outline of the Theory of
Structuration. Berkeley, CA: University of California Press.


Giddens, A. 1991. Modernity and Self
-
Identity in the Late Modern Age. Palo
Alto, CA: Stanford University Press.


Hägerstrand, T. (1970) “What about People in Regional Science?”
Papers of
the Regional Science Association
, v. 24 pp. 7
-
21.


Jones, P. et al. 1990. “Activity Analysis: State
-
of
-
the
-
Art and Future
Directions.” in P. Jones (ed.) Developments in Dynamic and Activity
-
Based
Approaches to Travel Analysis. Aldershot, U.K.: Gower.


Kurani K. and Turrentine T. 1997. “Household Adaptations to New Personal
Transport Options: the Reflexive Organization of Household Activity Spaces.”
Institute of Transportation Studies. Davis, CA. UCD
-
ITS
-
RR
-
01
-
06.


Kurani, K.S. and T. Turrentine 2002.
Marketing Clean and Efficient Vehicles:
A Review of Social Marketing and Social Science Approaches
. Davis, CA:
Institute of Transportation Studies. UCD
-
ITS
-
RR
-
02
-
01. August.


Kurani, K.S., Turrentine T., Heffner, R.R., and Congleton, C.D. 2003.
“Prospecting the Future for Hydrogen Fuel Cell Vehicle Markets.” Institute of
Transportation Studies. Davis, CA. UCD
-
ITS
-
RR
-
03
-
9. October.


United States Department of Transportation, Federal Highway Administration
(FHWA) (1976) America’s Highways 1776/1976: A History of the Federal
-
Aid
Program. Washington, D.C.: U.S. Department of Transportation.