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Travel Behavior Change in Older Travelers: Understanding Critical Reactions to Incidents Encountered in Public Transport
Stockholm University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Psychology.
Number of Authors: 1
2015 (English)In: International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, ISSN 1660-4601, E-ISSN 1660-4601, Vol. 12, no 11, 14741-14763 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Accessibility of travel may be better understood if psychological factors underlying change in travel behavior are known. This paper examines older (65+) travelers' motives for changing their travel behavior. These changes are grounded in critical incidents earlier encountered in public-transport travel. A scientific framework is developed based on cognitive and behavioral theory. In 29 individual interviews, travelers' critical reactions (i.e., cognitive, emotional, and/or behavioral) to 77 critical incidents were examined. By applying critical incident technique (CIT), five reaction themes were identified that had generated travel-behavior change: firm restrictions, unpredictability, unfair treatment, complicated trips, and earlier adverse experiences. To improve older travelers' access to public transport, key findings were: (a) service must be designed so as to strengthen the feeling of being in control throughout the journey; (b) extended personal service would increase predictability in the travel chain and decrease travel complexity; consequently, (c) when designing new services and making effective accessibility interventions, policy makers should consider and utilize underlying psychological factors that could direct traveler behavior.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2015. Vol. 12, no 11, 14741-14763 p.
Keyword [en]
older persons, critical incidents, critical reactions, travel behavior change
National Category
Psychology
Research subject
Psychology
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-124773DOI: 10.3390/ijerph121114741ISI: 000365645500073PubMedID: 26593935OAI: oai:DiVA.org:su-124773DiVA: diva2:891077
Available from: 2016-01-05 Created: 2016-01-04 Last updated: 2016-02-02Bibliographically approved
In thesis
1. Overall Accessibility of Public Transport for Older Adults
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Overall Accessibility of Public Transport for Older Adults
2016 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

This thesis is based on four studies that explore accessibility for older adults during whole trips by public transport. The overall goal was to gain knowledge of the interrelationships among key variables and to develop a conceptual model of the overall accessibility of public transport. More specifically, the research goals were: (a) to explore links among the key variables postulated to be involved in overall accessibility and to explore the links between these variables and railway accessibility; (b) to gain a deeper understanding of links between critical incidents in traveling and travel behavior decisions; and (c) to develop a conceptual model of overall accessibility. The key variables contributing to overall accessibility are functional ability (depending partly on the person’s functional limitation or disease), travel behavior, and barriers encountered during whole-trip traveling involving train. Respondents with more than one functional limitation or disease reported lower functional ability than did those with only one such limitation and respondents with low functional ability were less frequent travelers than were those with high functional ability. Frequent travelers reported railway accessibility to be better than did those who traveled less frequently. The main barriers were ticket cost and poor punctuality, but respondents with the lowest functional ability attributed the barriers encountered to their own health. The critical incidents most frequently reported were found in the categories “physical environment onboard vehicles” and “physical environment at stations or stops”, as well as in the “pricing and planning during ticketing” phase of the trip. Five themes of reactions to critical incidents were identified that had resulted in behavior change: firm restrictions, unpredictability, unfair treatment, complicated trips, and earlier adverse experiences. A conceptual model of overall accessibility was developed, grounded in the empirical research results. This model is summarized in the following propositions: Overall accessibility is a reciprocal relationship among the barriers/facilitators encountered, functional ability, and travel behavior. Accessibility emerges in the person–environment interaction. To understand accessibility, past experiences and future expectations should both be considered, because both will guide travel decisions.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Stockholm: Department of Psychology, Stockholm University, 2016
Keyword
older persons, critical incidents, critical reactions, travel behavior, accessibility, functional limitation, functional ability, barrier, facilitator, public transport, railway travel
National Category
Psychology
Research subject
Psychology
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:su:diva-126301 (URN)978-91-7649-327-4 (ISBN)
Public defence
2016-03-11, David Magnussonsalen (U31), Frescati Hagväg 8, Stockholm, 10:00 (English)
Opponent
Supervisors
Projects
Measurements enable future train travelling for everybody
Funder
Swedish Transport Administration, F09-11460/AL50Swedish Research Council Formas
Available from: 2016-02-17 Created: 2016-01-29 Last updated: 2016-02-09Bibliographically approved

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