Impact of COVID-19 on Remote Work and Shared Travel Modes: A Matched Pre- / Post-Lockdown Study in Singapore
Rachel Luo, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT)Show Abstract
Joanna Moody (email@example.com), Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT)
Jinhua Zhao, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT)
The COVID-19 pandemic disrupted work and travel around the world, with potential long-term ramifications. This study analyzes panel data collected from n = 236 Singaporean residents who responded to two surveys, one deployed early in the pandemic and the other one month later during the national lockdown (“circuit breaker”). Results show that early in the pandemic, individuals adopted simpler preventions like hand-washing. However, they were less likely to take drastic measures like avoiding transit or shifting to telework until required to do so by the national lockdown. Further, travelers’ fear of contagion on transit vehicles and their intention to avoid shared modes doubled once the lockdown began. For remote work, the data indicates that individuals’ past experience with telework is predictive of their adoption of it during the pandemic’s early, pre-lockdown period. Individuals’ expectations regarding teleworking post-pandemic also rose as their telework experience increased during COVID-19; early in the pandemic, 9.7% expected to work remotely over 75% of the time post-pandemic, while 27.4% thought so once the country entered lockdown. However, despite anticipating an expansion of telework, 40% of respondents reported being less effective while working remotely, suggesting a trade-off for decision-makers seeking to offer workers flexibility while maintaining productivity. The transformation of work and mobility during COVID-19 offers policymakers opportunities to reform travel and work patterns to reduce congestion and improve urban travel, but trade-offs will have to be balanced for an effective recovery.
Longitudinal Analysis of COVID-19 Impacts on Mobility: An Early Snapshot of the Emerging Changes in Travel Behavior
Grant Matson, University of California, DavisShow Abstract
Sean McElroy, University of California, Davis
Yongsung Lee, University of Hong Kong
Giovanni Circella, University of California, Davis
The COVID-19 pandemic has caused huge disruption to society with, among other impacts, direct and indirect effects (e.g. through public health measures) on travel behavior. Since its initial outbreak, COVID-19 has manifested itself into a global pandemic. In response to extensive community spread and potential risk of infection, many state and local governments implemented stay-at-home orders along with measures for social distancing restricting non-essential travel for residents. These travel advisories imposed broad restrictions on millions of Americans resulting in drastic changes in mobility and disruptions to economic activity. In our study we use a combination of data from two previous online surveys and a current data collection conducted to evaluate the impacts of the pandemic on mobility to form a unique longitudinal panel. The use of a longitudinal panel provides us the ability to observe initial trends in travel behavior change, adoption of online shopping, active travel and use of shared mobility services. In our analysis present initial descriptive statistics from the sample to examine the changes in various components of travel behavior in the sample (N=1,274) and for each income/occupation group separately. We find substantial shifts from physical commutes to teleworking, more adoption of e-shopping and home delivery services, more frequent trips by walking and biking for leisure purposes, and changes in ride-hailing use. Also, we discuss implications of these findings from the perspectives of environmental sustainability and social equity. This study concludes with suggestions of directions for effective policy and future research.
Impact of Social Media Use on Travel Behavior during COVID19 Outbreak: Evidence from New York City
Qian Ye, Tongji UniversityShow Abstract
Kaan Ozbay, New York University
Fan Zuo, New York University
Xiaohong Chen, Tongji University
Understanding the impact of COVID-19 on human mobility has now become one of the most important research questions after the nation-wide impacts of the pandemic have become prominent. Some recent studies address the effect of governmental policies or orders on issues impacted by COVID-19 including health, education, public safety, and, mobility. However, not much is known about the public concerns on social media platforms related to COVID-19 and its impact on people’s travel behaviors. This study investigates social media use and impact on traveling before and after the outbreak of the pandemic. New York City is selected as the case study site for studying the interplay between mobility trends and Twitter data. Results show that social media use is negatively correlated with mobility trends for both driving and transit use, and a significant time lag between tweets and mobility trends were found. Moreover, it is found that different influence mechanisms are resulting from user-generated content and governments/healthcare organizations' actions, both affecting people’s mode choice preferences for vehicle and transit use. This study provides insights into the impacts of COVID-19 by improving our understanding of the complexities of travel behavior in the new information ecosystem due to both traditional sources of information and user-generated content. The findings of this paper can be used to support effective decision-making in response to any similar major disruptive events in the future.
Understanding the impacts of COVID-19 pandemic on dynamics of online shopping behavior
Ramin Shabanpour (firstname.lastname@example.org), University of North FloridaShow Abstract
Ali Shamshiripour, University of Illinois, Chicago
Ehsan Rahimi, University of Illinois, Chicago
Nima Golshani, Georgia Institute of Technology (Georgia Tech)
Abolfazl Mohammadian, University of Illinois, Chicago
The e-commerce industry, and in particular, the online grocery retail sector has been witnessing a steady growth in the last few years. The COVID-19 pandemic, however, accelerated this shift to an unprecedented pace. Indeed, the challenges brought by the pandemic have urged people to rethink the way they pursue their daily activities including shopping. Although there is a rich body of literature on people’s online shopping behavior in a “normal” condition, it is crucial to account for the new considerations introduced by the pandemic when modeling people’s online shopping behavior. This study is an effort to address this essential need by focusing on how people have adjusted their shopping behavior due to the pandemic, and whether these adjustments will persist afterward. To provide the required information for this analysis, a travel behavior survey is designed and implemented in the Chicago region. The collected data encompasses comprehensive information about people’s online shopping habits before the pandemic, the potential adjustments made during the pandemic, and their expectations about their future behavior in the post-pandemic situation. In order to capture the interactions of these three variables, they are modeled through a joint framework. The applied model also accounts for potential endogenous effects of past and current experiences on future behavior. Capturing such dynamics imposed by the current crisis is critical for updating our travel demand models so that they can be used as reliable and useful planning tools for such disastrous conditions.
Shifting Behaviors in Unprecedented Times: How Are Intentions to Use Shared Modes Changing During the COVID-19 Pandemic
Maher Said, Northwestern UniversityShow Abstract
Jason Soria, Northwestern University
Amanda Stathopoulos, Northwestern University
The spread of COVID-19 globally has been a major disruptive force in people’s everyday lives and general mobility. A component of the transportation system that has been specifically impacted by these disruptions is that of shared modes of travel, such as taxis and ridehailing, given the concerns about virus transmission. Today, demand for these modes have decreased by as much as 80%. This study aims to understand the shift in consideration of these modes as a result of unprecedented experiences in order to both, understand the potential recovery for shared mobility modes as well as the behavioral impact of drastic changes in lifestyle on transportation systems. With multiple reports and discussions on how COVID-19 will fundamentally change and redesign urban mobility, this study sets precedence for future efforts in assessing realized behavioral changes in the future. The results indicate that political orientation and experiences during the pandemic are significant in explaining the individual change in intentions to use ridesourcing. Additionally, characteristics such as age and income result in consideration shifts that would normally contradict the typical ridership profiles found in the ridesourcing literature. Specifically, this analysis finds that hailed ride consideration decreases as a function of either age or income. These findings are carefully presented and contextualized in this study.
Assessing U.S. Current and Future Impacts of Telework During the COVID-19 Pandemic
Andrew Duvall (email@example.com), National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL)Show Abstract
Joshua Sperling, National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL)
Alana Wilson, National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL)
Stanley Young, National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL)
Daniel Zimny-Schmitt, National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL)
This paper provides an overview of new research into telework impacts and implications for potential energy and cost savings. The study explores the future of mobility, work, and value of alternative uses of commute time toward understanding of multifaceted dynamics, impacts and opportunities to reshape sustainable mobility, quality of life, and workforce norms. Telework is not new yet has been greatly expanded in scope by the pandemic, estimated at 31% of the early March 2020 employed workforce by April 2020. This poses unique opportunities to explore how new telework behaviors for large segments of the workforce may transform energy and economic savings potential, with important mobility and other system-level implications. The analyses in this paper build upon recent surveys that estimate 63% of U.S. jobs require significant onsite presence with 37% able to be performed remotely. Savings estimated in Colorado equal 28% of household vehicle miles traveled (VMT), or 52.7 million round-trip VMT and 2.1 million gallons of gasoline. Nationally, estimated savings are 7.7 quadrillion BTU of energy annually. Mobility and quality of life co-benefits in sustained high levels of remote work may include new access to job choices, location-based affordability in living expenses, and beneficial value, use, and productivity of time that had previously been spent commuting. New burdens (childcare) and economic impacts (unemployment) cannot be overlooked, with more analysis needed. Questions are identified on infrastructure modernization and workforce mobility transitions, with a goal of informing future research, planning and decision-making.
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