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The sensitivity of optimal transport strategies to specification of objectives

By P.M. Timms, A.D. May and S.P. Shepherd

Abstract

This paper describes a method for devising transport strategies that makes iterative use of transport models to find the optimal levels of pre-defined transport measures. It gives the results from using this method in nine European cities. At the heart of the procedure lies the definition of objective functions which encapsulate policy-makers’ objectives with respect to economic efficiency and sustainability. These objective functions include a number of significant parameters and the paper examines the sensitivity of the results to changes in the values of these parameters. The parameters concerned are: the level of shadow price used with regard to public sector financial surplus and deficit; the trade-off between the perspectives of the present generation and a future generation (of importance to issues of sustainability); the trade-off between internal benefits/costs and external (environmental) benefits/costs; and the level of user benefits that can be “value captured” in the sense of raising additional finance for transport policies. Full sets of results are given for these sensitivity tests, and a number of practical transport policy conclusions are made

Publisher: Elsevier Science
Year: 2002
OAI identifier: oai:eprints.whiterose.ac.uk:2509

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