Transport decision making: theory and practice 2018


Lecturer: E. Maggi

Aim and contents of the course

The course provides students with an understanding of some economic important issues and related methodologies applied in transport economics for decision making analysis about mobility issues. The focus is both on individual decisions concerning passengers and goods mobility and on public policies.

The first part of the course presents an overview of the peculiarities of transport economics, the transport demand and supply functions and the public regulation policies of transport industry. Moreover, the most frequently used transport choice models are presented.

As regards, methods and models applied in transport economics, the course focuses in particular on: (i) one of the most used methodologies of transport infrastructure evaluation, CBA (Cost Benefit Approach); (ii) the Agent-Based Models, of more recent application in transport such as in other socio-economics issues. An introduction on Complexity Theory Economics, in which ABM could be included, is also explained. Some empirical works will be analyzed, in which the main aim is the simulation of the dynamic behavior of individual mobility stakeholders and their interconnections in complex social systems and/or the assessment both ex ante and ex post of the impacts of potential public transport policies on individual behavior. “NetLogo” open-source software will be also used. The software should be downloaded by the students on their PC, before coming to the lesson, from the web-site

Class format: Frontal lectures, seminars and students’ presentation.


The assessment is based on in-class paper presentation.
Each student has to prepare a presentation on a scientific paper, that can be chosen in the folder “Papers for in-class presentation” (see e-learning course web site). The presentation should be based on a power point file and shall have a duration of maximum 20 minutes and it will be followed by a discussion with the other students.
Evaluation is based on two elements: ppt preparation and in-class presentation of the paper (70%) and ability to discuss the papers of the other students (30%). Only three grades are provided: failure; pass; pass with distinction.

Reading materials: the relevant papers and documents are posted on the course web-site on e-learning platform.

Office hours: by appointment.