A Research Agenda for Transport Policy
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A Research Agenda for Transport Policy

Edited by John Stanley and David A. Hensher

Everyone has an opinion on transport: it significantly affects daily lives. This book highlights key transport opportunities and challenges, and identifies research requirements to inform policy discussion and support better societal outcomes. It does this by scanning across modes, continents, technologies and socio-economic settings, looking for common threads, points of difference and opportunities to make a difference. The book should appeal to prospective post-graduate students, professionals in transport and related fields, and those interested in better places and good discussions.
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Chapter 22: Big data and transport

Marcela A. Munizaga

Abstract

After many years of data scarcity in transportation-related sciences, we have now entered the era of big data. Large amounts of data are available from GPS devices, mobile phone traces, payment transactions, social media, and other sources. The opportunities that this new availability presents are enormous. High-quality data is available at very low or negligible cost. These data can be used to develop new tools, to explore and understand travel behavior and to formulate new policies. However, the challenges are also big: the access to the data is not guaranteed, confidentiality has to be considered, the capacity of processing and enriching these databases has to be developed, and only then will they become really useful for decision-making and for the definition of public policies. This chapter presents an overview of the current state of play, and discusses the future perspectives, focusing on the challenges of building new predictive models.

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